Asia and Africa will drive the next wave of smartphone growth

The smartphone revolution may not be over, but the days of heady growth around the world are. From now on, growth will be driven mostly by Asia and Africa.

Predictions from mobile analytics firm GSMA Intelligence show that annual sales of smartphones in North America and Europe will be nearly flat for the next five years, while the market in Asia will keep expanding as consumers replace feature phones with smartphones. Sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East and North Africa, and Latin America will also see some growth.

This chart comes from a report by Needham, which just initiated coverage of Apple — it rates the company a Strong Buy with a price target of $150.

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