by Pathik Shah | Thursday, 29th Mar 2012 IDC just published a new research report tracking the growth in sales of PC, tablet and smartphone shipments in the coming years. Smart connected devices, which include these three, saw shipments of more than 916 million units, with revenues of around $489 billion in 2011. IDC predicts total device shipments to reach 1.1 billion in 2012, with device shipments almost doubling to 1.84 billion units by 2016 – a CAGR of nearly 15.4%. Smartphones are expected to account for a major portion of this growth, while tablets will also account for significant growth. PC shipments aren’t expected to grow much in the coming years. While Windows is currently the top platform on smart devices, its overall share is expected to drop to 25.1% share in 2016, from a 35.9% share in 2011. On the other hand, Android devices will account for almost 31.1% of all smart devices in 2016, up from 29.4% in 2011, and lead the total market. Apple’s iOS devices are expected to capture 17.3% market share in 2016, up from 14.6% in 2011. The growth in Android device sales is expected to be driven by the propagation of cheap tablets and smartphones, a segment which is currently dominated by Android. Interestingly, IDC mentions that most Android device makers will find it hard to stay profitable, given the intense price competition. It also says that iOS will continue to be more lucrative for developers, despite the low market share, due to a higher proportion of users who are willing to pay for apps.