Framingham, Mass. – The worldwide smartphone market is expected
to grow 49.2% this year, with a projected more than 450 million smartphones
expected to be shipped in 2011, compared to 303.4 million in 2010, according to
a report from market research firm IDC.

"Last year’s high market growth
was due in part to pent-up demand from a challenging 2009, when many buyers held
off on mobile phone purchases," said IDC analyst Kevin Restivo.

expected market growth for 2011, while still notable, will taper off somewhat
from what we saw in 2010."

Android (NASD: GOOG) is expected to take over as the leading
smartphone operating system in 2011, while IDC predicts Microsoft’s (NASD: MSFT) Windows
Phone 7 will eventually overtake Apple’s (NASD: AAPL) iOS — a result of the company’s
recent partnership with Nokia (NYSE: NOK).

"The new alliance brings together Nokia’s
hardware capabilities and Windows Phone’s differentiated platform. We expect
the first devices to launch in 2012," said IDC analyst Ramon Llamas.

"By 2015, IDC expects Windows Phone to be
number 2 operating system worldwide behind Android."



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