SHD Market Increases After Steady Q4 2002, Finds IDC

NORTH SYDNEY – MARCH 18, 2003 – The total Australian SHD (smart handheld devices) market increased by 4.7% from Q3 2002. This increase was caused primarily through the jump in sales of pen based units which increased 5.3% quarter on quarter. Shipments of converged devices could not match the significant increases of the previous quarter contracting 1.7% sequentially in Q4'02.


IDC Analyst, Imraan Ali attributed the growth of the market to strong retail sales during Q4 2002. This accompanied by a greater advertising from vendors saw many consumers take advantage of these specials. With a number of new models arriving in the market at the same time, competition was very strong as vendors looked to cash in on the Christmas season.

Mr. Ali also stated, in terms of operating systems, the Palm OS once again dominated the pen based market, accounting for 56.4% of all shipments for Q4'02. This was due to strong sales of the new Palm 'Zire' and 'Tungsten T' which found favour in the retail space. Microsoft's Pocket PC OS claimed second with a 42.1% share of the market. Linux and Windows CE accounted for the remaining 1.5%. In the converged market the Symbian OS ran out the clear winner claiming a 47.3% share of the market. Second place went to the Palm OS with 26.2% and Pocket PC rounded out the top three with 16.7%.

At a vendor level, Q4 2002 saw Palm finish the year strongly to claim top position. Second place was claimed by Hewlett Packard who slightly dipped from Q3'02. Toshiba held on to third due to the strong performance of its e740 model. Fourth and fifth positions went to Sony and Nokia who both had steady sales during the quarter.

Top five vendors (total market):

Palm 46.2%

HP 24.1%

Toshiba 10.7%

Sony 4.2%

Nokia 3.8%