Mobiles to overtake desktop computing in a future-present near you

August 12, 2010 - Written By Chris Yackulic

With PCs becoming more mobile- smaller and smaller desktops, then laptops, netbooks, smartbooks, UMPCs- and mobile phones becoming more like PCs (I am pretty sure my current phone has more crunching power than a Pentium III, maybe it’s even better than that?), one of them will have to become the clear winner.

It looks like mobile phones (and particularly smartphones) are becoming that winner.  There are over a billion phones sold in a year.  There are more active subscriptions than half the humans on the planet.

The companies below are the biggest mobile phone and computer vendors around.  This data is based on their own reporting.  If you add up all the computers sold in one day, and all of the cell phones sold in one day, the phones are trailing by just a small margin (800,000 vs. 700,000).

Unfortunately, the Windows 7 figure includes upgrades to the new OS as well as new unit purchases.

If you look at estimates by IDC, a consumer analysis firm, it comes out to 887,000 units with desktop OSes a day and about 713,000 smartphones per day.

This does not account for growth and acceleration.  Early in the quarter, Android devices were selling at half the speed they currently are!  Most of the other platforms are growing as well, but Android has the highest acceleration.

These numbers don’t include the iPad or iPod, because they are both in a hazy space between media devices and smartphones.  If you were to count them, you would get an additional 10 million devices per quarter.

If you are going to count those, then you have to count the Android media players and tablets that will flood the market as well.  Offerings from Dell and Samsung and many other manufacturers puts an estimated additional 20 million devices in the market per quarter.

Here’s what that looks like:

If even this rate stops accelerating, but just cruises along at the same rate, mobile devices will easily overtake “full” computers.  Humanity will be mobile.