Market report: rugged mobile accessories

The Venture Development Corp. report measures the aftermarket mobile device accessories market.
By Control Engineering Staff September 13, 2007

Venture Development Corp. (VDC) has released a new report that analyzes the global market demand for rugged mobile device accessories. The report measures the aftermarket mobile device accessories market, comprised of accessories for commercial-grade and rugged form factor products including notebooks, tablet PCs, handheld PDAs, and smartphones. Among the market data are interesting usage trends.

This market is not the standard commodity accessories opportunity, says VDC. “Attach rates” for mobile platforms are higher, for example, and incumbent suppliers control a significant share of the market. For every dollar spent on a rugged mobile device, 26 cents is spent on a mobile accessory. Approximately 3 cents per dollar is spent on a commercial-grade mobile device. Various factors explain the attach rates, including:

Rugged mobile computer buyers are typically enterprises deploying devices in mission-critical applications. The investments are justified with sophisticated TCO (total cost of ownership) and ROI (return on investment) models that often demand investment in peripherals and accessories to support real-time distributed transaction processing applications that reduce cost, enhance revenue, or materially improve customer service. In order to realize the gains predicted by the application model, and required by the financial model, the solutions must be operated; they must support the application reliably, predictably, and comfortably.

Users of rugged mobile devices and accessories can expect suppliers to follow one or more of the following strategies:

  • Meet current demand for vertical-specific mobile solutions with vertical-specific accessory lines.

  • Seek additional sales by offering significant product to customers who own various manufacturers’ mobile devices. Perhaps the lower-risk path is to consider vertical market or application-segment specific offerings.

  • Commercial-grade accessories suppliers may use their competitive advantages (namely lower manufacturing costs due to volume) to provide alternatives and capture share.

The global spending on mobile accessories for rugged mobile devices is forecast to grow at 12.7% over the next five years, from $880 million in 2006 to more than $1.6 million in 2011.

—Edited by Renee Robbins , Editorial Director, Control Engineering

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