Smartphone sales have been rising.The 968 million smartphones sold surpassed the sales offeature phones for the first time, Gartner noted earlier this month. However, sales actually topped 1 billion, according to IDC. What’s the difference of 32 million betweenfriends? Not much.Here’s a more important point: High-end smartphone sales have been slowing fast, while low-endsmartphone sales have been rising fast, both companies observed.This may lead to the assumption that in order forsmartphone manufacturers to do well, they need to sell sub-US$200 — andeven sub-$150 — “smartphones.” If they don’t, they’ll miss out onsomething really super important.The problem is, when you look at smartphone revenues and profits, there appears to be no upside for Apple in chasing the low end.Apple snagged 87.4 percent of mobile phoneearnings before interest and taxes in the fourth quarter of 2013, said Tavis McCourt, an analyst with Raymond James, in an Investors.com report.Samsung claimed 32.2 percent of industry profits.If you’re doing themath right now, don’t worry about hurting your head — McCourt’s mathtakes into account the industry total earnings that resulted from manymanufacturers actually losing money in the fourth quarter. Basically,while Apple and Samsung are raking in profit, their competitorshave been burning money just to stay warm.Because… Read full this story
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