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Economic slowdowns in China, India cast shadow over handset sales

The twin engines of global handset growth – China and India – are experiencing economic slowdowns that threaten “serious harm” to 2009 sales, according to a prominent financial analyst.
The slowing of those emerging economies could drag global handset sales below negative 10% growth next year, according to Pablo Perez-Fernandez at Global Crown Capital L.L.C.
The analyst today forecast a lengthening handset replacement cycle next year and even a “downgrade phenomenon” in which consumers actually seek out cheaper handsets than their current one. That will accelerate a decline in average selling prices, the analyst said.
Nokia Corp. is best positioned to weather the downturn – even gaining 1% to 5% market share in 2009, while rivals Motorola Inc. and Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications and domestic Chinese brands would suffer the most pain.

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