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PH is 3rd largest smartphone market in 2014 in Southeast Asia—IDC

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines emerged as the third-largest smartphone market in Southeast Asia last year, with domestic brands like Cherry Mobile leading the way in terms of shipments, the global consultancy firm IDC said.

IDC said in its statement that smartphone shipments to the Philippines increased 77.1 percent to 12.4 million units in 2014, behind Indonesia’s 25 million units and Thailand’s 16.5 million units.

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In terms of value, the Philippines was the fifth largest, with smartphones shipped estimated to be worth $1.67 billion, up 15.8 percent.

IDC’s data showed that feature phones still comprised the bulk of the Philippine market but that lead was cut significantly in 2014. In numbers, the share of smartphone shipments in 2014 hit 47 percent from 24 percent in 2013, IDC noted.

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A key reason was the falling price of smartphones. IDC noted that $90 models accounted for more than half, or 58 percent, of all Philippine shipments in 2014.

“The narrowing price gap between smartphones and feature phones made smartphones more palatable to budget-conscious Filipino consumers, leading to the faster adoption of smartphones in 2014 compared to previous years,” Jerome Dominguez, Market Analyst at IDC Philippines, said in the statement.

“Catching up on the smartphone craze, the Philippines is now the third largest market for smartphones in Southeast Asia, coming after Indonesia and Thailand,” he added.

The Philippines is also the fourth country in Southeast Asia to ship more smartphones than feature phones, after Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand, IDC noted. The third quarter of 2014 was the first time in the Philippine market where smartphone shipments surpassed those of feature phones, marking the onset of a new era.

As noted, local vendors, which tend to be less expensive, cornered most of the domestic market. IDC’s data showed that Cherry Mobile accounted for 21.9 percent of Philippine smartphone shipments last year, followed by Samsung (13.3 percent), MyPhone (11.2 percent), Lenovo (6.5 percent) and Torque (4.8 percent).

Growth is expected to continue this year, IDC said.

Smartphone shipments are expected to grow 20 percent year-over-year. Feature phone shipments, on the other hand, are expected to decelerate by 20 percent this year as more vendors shift their focus to making smartphones.

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IDC also expects smartphone prices to continue to go down as vendors further push the price limits for smartphones to the sub-P2,000, or $50, price level.

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TAGS: Business, Cherry Mobile, IDC, Philippines, Smartphone, Southeast Asia, technology
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