Motorola needs a successor to its successful RAZR phone to hold on to market share, and BenQ Mobile is set to make gains when new products kick in. So says market research group Gartner.

Its quarterly market survey found that Motorola had a 20.3% global market share of consumers in the January-March period, up from 16.7% a year earlier, but Gartner analyst Carolina Milanesi said the slim RAZR phone would run out of steam.
“Now that everyone else is going after slim, Motorola needs more form factors. They need something as good as a RAZR but not necessarily a RAZR,” she said, after publishing quarterly data of mobile phone retail sales to consumers.

LG grew its market share to 6.5% from 6.3%, while Samsung fell to 12.5% from 13.5% (“Samsung is not convincing consumers. It lacks focus,” said Milanesi).

Market leader Nokia’s share grew to 34% from 30.4% a year earlier, the result of a wider choice of products the company introduced following substantial market share losses two years ago due to a weak portfolio. Nokia was the only top five company to sell more to consumers than it shipped to retailers, which means shops sold from inventories built up in the fourth quarter.

Sony Ericsson, with its successful focus on camera phones and Walkman music phones, grew its market share to 6.1% from 5.5%.

And at BenQ Mobile global market share dwindled to 3.5% from 5.7% a year earlier. Gartner thinks that the new products hitting the market this year are strong combinations of Siemens’ technical experience and BenQ’s consumer electronics expertise that will probably result in market share gains.

A total of 224m phones were sold to consumers in the first three months of 2006, a 24% increase on the year before. Gartner forecasts sales of 960m units for the full year, up from 816m
in 2005.

Company        Q1 06 Sales        Q1 06 Share
Nokia                76.1m                  34.0%
Motorola           45.5m                  20.3%
Samsung          28.1m                  12.5%
Sony Ericsson  13.6m                   6.1%
BenQ Mobile     7.9m                    3.5%
Others              38.4m                  17.1%
Total                 224m                   100% 
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