330 million Sub-$20 Handsets to Ship by 2011; India to Account for 116 million

The global market for sub-$20 ultra low cost handsets (ULCH) will surpass 330 million units in 2011, according to a new study from ABI Research. 

The research shows that India will be the biggest market in the next five years, growing from a little over 9 million handsets in 2006 to more than 116 million handsets in 2011.

Over 50% of these handsets will be shipped in the emerging markets of Asia Pacific and the remainder in markets of Africa, Middle East, Latin America, and Eastern Europe.

ABI Research expects that by 2011, almost one out of every four handset shipped globally will be an ultra low cost handset. 

Mobile operators will also see declining ARPUs because ultra low cost handset users are mostly from the low-income communities in the emerging markets, with monthly spending usually ranging from $2 to $5. 

The ultra low cost handset marketplace is currently dominated by Motorola and Nokia, but other handset manufacturers including LG Electronics, BenQ, Samsung, Philips, Ningbo Bird, Haier, and Kyocera have also started to introduce handsets for this segment. 

Motorola has already shipped 6 million sub-$40 handsets and another 6 million sub-$30 handsets to key emerging markets including India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand, Turkey, South Africa, Nigeria, Egypt, Algeria, Russia, and Ukraine.

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