A new report from IHS states that, by 2013, smartphones are forecasted to account for half of all phones sold. An update from previous estimates that pegged that 50 percent threshold would be reached around 2015.

IHS categorizes phones by smartphones, feature phones and basic/low-cost phones.

This new estimate isn’t shocking news, but the escalated pace is newsworthy.  Just last year smartphones totaled 35 percent of all phones worldwide.  Smartphones are figured to outnumber feature phones later this year but wont pass the 50 percent figure until sometime in 2013.

IHS analyst Wayne Lam figures the drop in smartphone prices have spurred growth in low-end phones in Asia and mid to high-end phones in the U.S. and Europe.  Based on these growth expectations, IHS figures smartphones will account for two-thirds of all mobile phone shipments by 2016, while basic phones will account for only 4 percent of the market.

With still a lot of growth left in this market it is no wonder Microsoft (and possibly even Amazon and others) has entered the mobile phone game.

[Source: AllThingsD]