In case you were in any doubt, the segment of the IT market seeing stellar growth at the moment is smartphones, despite continued down conditions in the global economy.

Technology analysts IDC today upgraded their growth forecast for the segment for 2010 to 55.4%, 10% higher than previously expected.

It now expects some 269.6million smartphones to be shipped globally during this year, up on the 173.5million sold in 2009.

“The smartphone is the catalyst behind the rebound in the worldwide mobile phone market this year,” said Kevin Restivo, senior research analyst with IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker. “Additional product introductions and an expected flurry of smartphone buying activity in the second half of the year will push the market well above previous expectations.”

Sales of smartphones already reached 119.4million for the first six months of 2010, with much of that going to models based around the Android and iOS operating systems.

“Longtime operating systems leaders BlackBerry, Symbian, and Windows Mobile are about to or have already launched refreshed operating systems to compete with recent newcomers Android and iOS. The latter operating systems have taken away both mindshare and market share from the old regime, and have helped propel the market forward,” Ramon Llamas, senior research analyst with IDC’s Mobile Devices Technology and Trends team, said.

However, IDC sees the good times rolling on for Android over the next five years with its market share expected to grow by 51.2%. By contrast, iOS will see its numbers shrink by over 25% during the same time period.

IDC says that the growth in numbers of Android devices from the likes of Dell, LG and Samsung will help spear the numbers for the Google operating system.

Worldwide Converged Mobile Device Operating System Market Shares and 2010-2014 Growth

Operating System 2010 Market Share 2014 Market Share 2014/2010

Change

Symbian 40.1% 32.9% -18.0%
BlackBerry OS 17.9% 17.3% -3.5%
Android 16.3% 24.6% 51.2%
iOS 14.7% 10.9% -25.8%
Windows Mobile 6.8% 9.8% 43.3%
Others 4.2% 4.5% 8.3%
Total 100.0% 100.0%

Source: idc.com

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