Worldwide 4G smartphone shipment surpasses 1 billion mark in 2016: IDC

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The year 2016 is coming to a close and many research firms have started releasing the performance data of smartphone market for the year. The latest firm to release the stats is the International Data Corporation (IDC) that says that the 4G smartphone shipment will surpass one billion mark this year.

According to IDC, the worldwide smartphone shipments will reach 1.45 billion in 2016, among which 1.17 billion will be 4G smartphones. This is a considerable increase from the previous year, around 21.3%. In 2015, the 4G smartphone shipment was registered at 967 million.

On the other hand, considering the total smartphone shipments for 2016, the year-on-year (y-o-y) growth is negligible, around 0.6%.

The increasing sale of 4G smartphones in emerging markets is a reason for this shipment growth. It is estimated that around 77% of the 4G smartphone devices are shipped to the emerging markets. The tariff rates of 4G data in emerging markets are also turning affordable, increasing 4G consumption in these countries.

The matured markets, including the countries such as the U.S., Canada, Western Europe, Japan, and South Korea, too have played a role in this surge of 4G smartphone shipment. According to IDC, the 4G smartphones in these markets will reach 94% in 2016, compared to the 85% in 2015.


Korea has went a step ahead that the country is all set to launch 5G in 2018 Winter Olympics.

In terms of operating system, the shipment volume of Android smartphones is expected to reach 1.22 billion, occupying 85% of market share and 5.2% y-o-y growth. The shipment of iOS devices will be around 206.1 million, making 14.3% market share. The shipment volume of Windows phones in 2016 will be around 6.1 million, offering it a market share of 0.4% in the year.

Also Read: Xiaomi sold over 2 million smartphones in Q3 2016, claims 150% YoY growth from Q3 2015 to Q3 2016

By 2020, the market share of Android smartphone is predicted to reach 85.6%. The volume of shipments would reach 1.4 billion. The shipment volume of iOS smartphones would reach 243.6 million, providing it a market share of 14.2% by 2020.

Reported By


An astute writer with a track record in writing and publishing content for various industries, Ria brings on board her wealth of experience in journalism and love for technology to TelecomTalk. When not writing or reading, she spends a copious amount of time daydreaming and finding obscure Japanese folklore on the internet.

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