IDC: Windows Phone will become second-ranking smartphone platform by 2016

In its latest forecasting report released on Wednesday, market research firm IDC has predicted that Windows Phone will overtake BlackBerry in the worldwide smartphone market and will outperform the Apple iOS to emerge as the second-ranking smartphone platform by 2016.

Going by the IDC predictions, the smartphone market share of Microsoft's Windows Phone - which barely had a 2.2 percent market share in smartphone shipments in the 2011 first-quarter - will grow to a notable 19.2 percent in
2016, from its present 5.2 percent total market share which is much less than the BlackBerry's 9.7 percent share, and Apple's 23 percent.

According to the IDC analysts, despite the fact that the Windows Phone platform has witnessed a rather slow start, it is seemingly set for stupendous growth in the next four-year period, with pricing and emerging markets seemingly playing a contributing role.

In the opinion of the IDC analysts, a chuck of the projected success of Windows Phone will be a result of Nokia's strong toehold in emerging markets. Since Nokia is championing Windows Phone devices, users will shift to the Microsoft platform in emerging markets like Asia, Latin America, and Africa.

Noting that Nokia is "one of the biggest leaders over there in emerging markets," Ramon Llamas - senior research analyst with IDC's Mobile Phone Technology and Trends team - said: "What I see from Windows Phone so far is that they're starting to roll out entry-level mass market smartphones."