SMARTPHONE shipments will reach one billion worldwide for the first time this year, according to a new report.
That would double the number of smartphones in use to two billion by the end of the year, analysts Deloitte predict.
In a new report, published next week, the company says that although it expects to see shipments of one billion smartphones this year, around a fifth of smartphone owners are unlikely to use their phones to connect to the internet.
Those with a smartphone, defined as a full touch screen or Qwerty-keyboard handset, are often worried about the price of data packages or confused about costs, Deloitte says.
The company's research found that a fifth of smartphone owners in 2012 did not use the device to connect to the internet. These people use their phone for voice calls, text messaging and taking photographs.
According to the research, 16 per cent of smartphone owners have never downloaded a mobile application. The report said: "It may be that the only apps this category of owners will ever use are those that come pre-loaded onto the device."
Deloitte says smartphone ownership will increase this year in part because of "hand-me-down" phones given to friends or relatives by someone who upgrades to a newer model.
However, the company warns that these users may not be able to get the full benefit of owning a smartphone because older devices may be unable to cope with the latest apps or with more complex websites.
Last month, industry analysts IDC predicted that smartphone shipments for 2012 would reach 717 million, which represents a 45 per cent increase on the year before.
Smartphone shipments worldwide are led by Samsung, which last year overtook Nokia to become the world's leading supplier of all mobile phones - not just smartphones.
By Shane Richmond Telegraph.co.uk