IDC: PDA sales to fall

According to the firm’s report on handheld shipments, the number of PDAs and handheld computers that were shipped in the third quarter of 2003 rose by 1.1% year-on-year. On a sequential basis, unit shipments increased by 9.4% to 2.37 million units. Palm maintained its top position in the market, while Hewlett-Packard rose sharply, distancing itself from number three Sony and moving closer to the top.
“Unless holiday season demand proves particularly positive, the handheld device market will decline more steeply in 2003 than in 2002 as it returns to 2000 levels,” said Sealfon.
According to IDC’s figures, Palm’s market share declined from 41.8% in the second quarter to 35.6% this quarter due to a slower than expected end-of-summer sales of current models. IDC said that despite a slight increase in sales, Sony’s market share declined from 11.9% in Q2 to 11.5 percent in the third quarter. This was largely due to increasing shipments from rival Hewlett-Packard.

IDC: Failure to communicate will doom PDAs

The market for stand-alone PDAs has been dropping steadily for several quarters, as consumers and businesses hold off on purchasing anything other than essential technology items, IDC said. In 2003, worldwide handheld shipments will decline 8.4% to 11.35 million units.

However, shipments of converged devices, which combine voice and data communications, will increase to about 13 million units by the end of 2003, IDC said. Nokia Corp. dominates the market for converged devices, shipping 1.2 million units in the second quarter, representing 61% of the market, according to IDC.