Report: Margins plummet among global handset makers

The current troubles in the world's handset industry are well-known. Indeed, Strategy Analytics recently said that the industry's first quarter handset shipments of 245 million was "the fastest rate of annual decline in handset shipments since our records began (in 1984)." A further measure of the market's weakness comes from Wireless Intelligence, which found that the average operating margin for the world's top five handset makers by market share--Nokia, Samsung, LG, Motorola and Sony Ericsson--fell to 4 percent, down from 13 percent in the year-ago period. Handset vendors have been unable, so far, to cut expense in areas such as research and development and marketing in order to offset shrinking margins. Release