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IDC predicts $26 billion handheld market

The number of handhelds sold worldwide is poised to take off from the 12.9 million units sold last year, according to market researcher IDC. Annual sales will reach more than 63.4 million units by 2004, IDC predicts, creating a market worth $26 billion. "Technological progress, particularly in mobile multimedia and wireless areas, will continue at a rapid pace, and 2001 will prove to be the year when mobile access devices hit their stride," said IDC analyst Kevin Burden.Traditional handhelds will continue to dominate the market, IDC predicts, although "smart phones," which combine cell phones with a handheld computer, will grow from less than 500,000 units in 2000 to more than 23 million units annually by 2004, IDC predicts.

    The number of handhelds sold worldwide is poised to take off from the 12.9 million units sold last year, according to market researcher IDC. Annual sales will reach more than 63.4 million units by 2004, IDC predicts, creating a market worth $26 billion. "Technological progress, particularly in mobile multimedia and wireless areas, will continue at a rapid pace, and 2001 will prove to be the year when mobile access devices hit their stride," said IDC analyst Kevin Burden.

    Traditional handhelds will continue to dominate the market, IDC predicts, although "smart phones," which combine cell phones with a handheld computer, will grow from less than 500,000 units in 2000 to more than 23 million units annually by 2004, IDC predicts.