Long relegated to niche markets, EDGE handsets are nevertheless capturing a 14 percent share of the mobile phone market, according to a report released Monday by ABI Research. The report predicts that 148 million EDGE units will be shipped this year.
Generally utilized with GSM networks like Cingular Wireless and T-Mobile in the U.S., EDGE phones are described as "the Cinderella" of the mobile phone world by the market research firm.
"EDGE is downplayed in the market because it cannot really provide a mobile broadband experience and is therefore not seen as being at the cutting edge of cellular handset evolution," said Jake Saunders, ABI research director, in a statement. "It is viewed purely as an evolutionary step on the GSM ladder and industry attention is very much focused on the new technologies such as WCDMA and HSDPA."
The ABI report said that more attention should be paid to EDGE technology, because it is the best technology available in many circumstances, particularly in situations where no 3G licenses are available.