Report: Smartphone shipments set to double by 2017

Worldwide smartphone shipments will reach 1.5 billion units in 2017, up from 712 million in 2012, according to the latest figures from research firm IHS. Growth will be largely driven by the huge choice of smartphones available to customers, with most of the top brands introducing new flagship models in the first half of 2013. Shipments this year are set to rise to 897 million units, up from 712 million in 2012. In the years ahead, IHS predicts smartphone shipments will expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15.8 per cent, reaching 1.1 billion units in 2014, followed by 1.2 billion in 2015, and 1.4 billion in 2016. At the same time, Apple's iPhone franchise appears to be stalling as first-quarter shipments of 37.4 million fell below expectations. With the next iPhone model not expected until the second half of the year, there is a real possibility that the full-year 2013 sales volume of the iPhone may be essentially flat at around 150 million units, compared to 134 million units in 2012. Release