Smartphones in $80-399 category to find more buyers globally

As consumers in both developed and emerging markets are increasingly looking at a better device experience in an affordable range, smartphones in the super mid category -- $80 to 399 -- are set to gain more market acceptance, chip maker Mediatek said.

"The global smartphone dynamics is changing. Now the user is more informed and looks for not only an affordable handset, but also an amazing experience. This phenomenon is everywhere from developed to emerging markets," Mediatek General Manager (International Sales & Marketing) Finbarr Moynihan told PTI.

The integrated chip supplier is experiencing strong demand from the booming affordable smartphone markets in China and other countries in the Asia-Pacific region.

"We expect smartphones in the super-mid category, from $80 to 399, to be the most selling option among users, especially in the emerging markets like India and China. But, this is not all this category is also finding acceptance in developed markets of the US and Europe," Moynihan said.

Rising middle class with more spending power in emerging markets is driving this shift and in developed markets also people at looking at good options in the middle segment in the range of about USD 200-400, he added.

According to research firm Gartner's Relative Industry Performance index analysis the Taiwan-headquartered firm has been significantly outgrowing its peers in the mobile handset market.

"MediaTek accomplished this by focusing on the low-tier and mid-tier segments in China and other emerging markets," it added.

On affordable smart devices, it said as global market for handsets and tablets undergo a change due to shifting consumer behaviour, buyers in mature markets are also looking at mid- range premium handsets, while emerging markets are opting for low-end Android smartphones.

The firm said: "In top-line spending, a shift in product mix continues to be seen in the marketplace. Demand for highly priced premium phones is slowing, with buyers in mature countries preferring mid-tier premium phones, while those in emerging countries favour low-end Android basic phones".

It projected worldwide combined device shipments (PCs, tablets, ultramobiles and mobile phones) to reach 2.5 billion units in 2014, a 7.6 per cent increase from 2013. Of this, handsets will account for 1.9 billion units this year, a five per cent increase from 2013.

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