The Economy Might Suck, but Smartphones Are Selling

Nearly three hundred million smartphones will be shipped this year by manufacturers. Analysis company IDC is predicting 269.9 million smartphones this year. That is a huge step up from last year’s 173.5 million units. What is boosting the shipments by so much? Of course a large part of it is demand, but the newest flagship smartphones from the big manufacturers are certainly helping. That’s where Research In Motion’s (RIM) new BlackBerry Torch 9800 comes in.

Even though it has not been selling as well as the new iPhone 4, it is still pushing hundreds of thousands of units with much more to be sold overseas. Expect the Torch sales to climb into the millions as the weeks tick by. Besides, just wait for when the companies decide to upgrade to the Torch.

I still cannot get over that 269.9M number. Isn’t the world’s economy pretty slow right now? Recession slow I might add. The expected growth this year just has not materialized. Why are so many people buying smartphones when they are losing their jobs, getting less hours, or just getting less pay for the same work? Smartphones like the BlackBerry are not exactly cheap. Add in their data, messaging and calling plans and you could easily find yourself paying over a hundred dollars a month just for service.

Smartphones are pocket computers and phones all in one. Oh, and GPS units, and cameras, and video cameras, and well you get the idea. Has the world’s love of smartphones grown to the point where they are no longer luxury items? I know they are already status symbols of some type, but they seem to be leading the slow climb out of the global economic doldrums. How much worse off would our economy be right now if Apple, RIM, and Google did not exist in the smartphone market?

Let’s keep our fingers crossed that the recession ends, but in the meantime, keep buying those smartphones!

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