Revenue from shipments of removable memory cards for handsets is expected hit more than $7 billion this year, compared with $5 billion expected from headset shipments including both Bluetooth and wired headsets, according to a recent study from ABI Research. Memory cards will continue to be the highest revenue-generating mobile phone accessory category over the next five years, ABI reports.
“Earlier handset vendors only provided wired headsets, but now even Bluetooth headsets are being presented inbox with the handsets. Therefore, greater aftermarket sales of memory cards versus increasing inbox sales for headsets are resulting in stronger growth and higher revenue from memory cards when compared with headsets,” said ABI Research industry analyst Shailendra Pandey.
The recent announcement by Nokia, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, Spansion, STMicroelectronics, Micron Technology, and Texas Instruments of support for the creation of the UFS (Universal Flash Storage) specification for use in mobile phones, digital cameras, and other CE devices is likely to fuel the rapid growth of the memory card market, ABI reported.
The UFS standard, expected to be finalized in 2009, will provide a unified memory solution for embedded memory and removable memory cards — eliminating the need to have adaptors for different memory card formats.
ABI Research expects the market for mobile phone accessories to grow steadily in the next five years, generating over $80 billion in revenue in 2012. The continuing innovation and further advancements in technology — coupled with the increasing desire of customers to personalize their handsets — bode well for the future of the market.