NFC penetration to exceed 50% in smartphones by 2014?

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With Nokia already putting NFC into all its Symbian smartphones and with RIM and Samsung also launching some models with the technology, plus HTC, Apple and others planning NFC into their roadmaps, Digitimes is reporting that Taiwanese smartphone manufacturers are estimating 50% penetration of NFC within two to three years. From my own observations this seems about right, though I'd put it at 80% for smartphones away from the budget end.

From the Digitimes story:

Samsung Electronics, HTC, Nokia and RIM have already launched NFC-enabled smartphone models in 2011, the sources noted. Without technological problems, the unsmooth development of NFC is mainly attributable to problems in standard specification, ecosystem and commercial operation, the sources indicated.

SIM-based NFC promoted by the GSM Association has won support from 45 mobile telecom carriers around the world, including AT&T, Verizon Wireless, Orange, Vodafone, Telefonica, Deutsche Telekom, Korea Telecom, Bharti Airtel, China Mobile and China United Network Communications, to become the mainstream NFC standard, the sources pointed out. This affords a clear direction for handset vendors and developers of applications to move toward applications of NFC functions, the sources indicated.

If you're unsure about NFC, what it is and what it's capable of, make sure you read my NFC Primer.