Smartphone penetration made impressive gains in the five largest European markets.
According to comScore, penetration in Spain, France, Italy, Germany, and the U.K. jumped to 55 per cent in October, up from 42 per cent a year prior.
Smartphone penetration stood at just 31 per cent a little under two years ago, in December 2010.
While the gains are impressive, that also means there is shrinking room for future growth as the non-smartphone population becomes increasingly older, less wealthy, and as a result—unable or unwilling to shell out the extra money for a smartphone.
Like the United States, which has also reached the 50 per cent tipping point, Europe will likely see growth rates across the entire mobile ecosystem slow as the smartphone market matures.
This points to a major shift happening in the smartphone market: ownership is going global and developing countries will drive future growth.
For example, comScore says that there are about 131 million active smartphone users in the top five European markets. China is on pace to sell more smartphones than that this year alone.