Samsung Tops Apple as Worldwide Smartphone Leader

Bloomberg reports that Samsung Electronics has finally overtaken Apple in the last quarter to become the world’s largest smartphone vendor. Both companies have been embroiled in legal battles all over the world because of various patent infringement claims. Samsung shipped 27.8 million smartphones in the last quarter, taking around 23.8 percent of the market, according to Milton Keynes from U.K.- based Strategy Analytics. Apple’s 17.1 million shipments equated to 14.6 percent of the market. Nokia maintained a third-place position.

Apple held the top spot for only one quarter after dislodging Nokia from the top spot earlier this year. Samsung has turned to Google’s Android software to boost sales of its Galaxy smartphones and tablet computers – and the strategy seems to be working pretty well for the company.

“Samsung has come out with products that appeal to all the different form factors and specifications out there,” said T.Z. Wong, a Beijing-based analyst at researcher IDC. “That is a strategy they have executed very well.”

“Samsung’s rise has been driven by a blend of elegant hardware designs, popular Android services, memorable sub-brands and extensive global distribution,” Strategy Analytics wrote. “Samsung has demonstrated that it is possible, at least in the short term, to differentiate and grow by using the Android ecosystem.”

The overall global smartphone market rose 44 percent from a year earlier to 117 million units, Strategy Analytics said. Nokia dropped to 14.4 percent from 32.7 percent from a year earlier.

In the wider mobile-phone market which takes into account low-cost mobile devices, Nokia maintained its top spot even after losing 5 percent, according to Strategy Analytics. Nokia garnered 27.3 percent of that market, putting it ahead of Samsung’s 22.6 percent, with LG Electronics Inc. coming in third. Chinese phone maker ZTE Corp. took 4.7 percent of the market, putting it ahead of Apple. Global market shipments climbed 14 percent to 390 million units, according to Strategy Analytics.

Source: Bloomberg

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