IDC Finds Mobile Brand Preferences Vary by Country

FRAMINGHAM, MA – DECEMBER 7, 2006 – The results of IDC's recent multiclient study and survey of mobile phone and smartphone subscribers across five countries reveals that top global brands are in demand not only in developed countries such as the U.S., U.K., and Germany, but also in emerging countries such as India and China. The relative influence of brand on product choice (especially in China and India) suggests that many people seek out global brands and the prestige that they carry.

Logic dictates that one would expect to find the proliferation of relatively inexpensive devices and brands in developing countries, but IDC's survey reveals quite the opposite phenomena. Chinese subscribers look more at the brand and style (top two purchase criteria) rather than being concerned with the underlying technology and product features. In India high-end products like the Nokia Communicator 9500 do well precisely because they show off how wealthy and successful an individual is, and users tend to be loyal to the smartphone brands they carry. IDC's survey revealed that 69% of respondents in India were likely to recommend their smartphone brand to others, higher than other countries surveyed, except for the U.S.

"When you look around the world there is a growing prevalence of premium brands in emerging markets among populations with substantially lower income levels," said Randy Giusto, group vice president for IDC's Mobility, Computing and Consumer Markets research. "Brands such as Nokia, for example, dominate the Indian and Chinese markets from a market share perspective and are much sought after because of the image that they project."

The IDC special report, Mobile Device ARPU for Leading Markets: U.S., U.K., Germany, India, and China, A Multiclient Study, explores which key mobile device features, operating systems, and applications influence ARPU, and compare and contrast them among users in five countries — the U.S., U.K., Germany, India, and China. Data is segmented by mobile phone and smartphone respondents, as well as by smartphone OS, and mobile operator, for each country market surveyed. This document represents a comprehensive study outlining the summarized results of each country, comparing and contrasting results by country, and exploring the role that device features, applications, operating systems, mobile device brands, and mobile operators play across these markets. This study follows IDC's successful U.S. Mobile ARPU Influencers multiclient, which focused exclusively on the U.S. market and was published in May 2005.

Meet Randy Giusto and other IDC research analysts at 2007 International CES, where IDC will host three breakfast briefings at the Wynn Las Vegas on January 8th, 9th, and 10th. The briefings will feature IDC's expert analysts as they discuss opportunities for technology, services, device, content, and hardware vendors to capitalize on trends in consumer markets. Register today at http://www.idc.com/ces .

About IDC

IDC is the premier global market intelligence and advisory firm in the information technology and telecommunications industries. We analyze and predict technology trends so that our clients can make strategic, fact-based decisions on IT purchases and business strategy. Over 700 IDC analysts in 50 countries provide local expertise and insights on technology markets. Business executives and IT managers have relied for 40 years on our advice to make decisions that contribute to the success of their organizations.

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