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Smartphones outsold feature phones for the first time in the second quarter

Welcome to the modern age
Wed Aug 14 2013, 13:35
Pile of discarded mobile phones

MARKET ANAYLST OUTFIT Gartner has revealed that smartphones outsold feature phone devices for the first time in the second quarter.

While it's hard to believe that feature phones were still outselling smartphones until recently, Gartner has revealed that is no longer the case. According to the firm's analysis of the global mobile phone market in the second quarter, smartphone sales reached 225 million units during the three month period, up 46.5 percent year on year, while feature phone sales slipped 21 percent to 210 million.

Anshul Gupta, principal research analyst at Gartner said, "Smartphones accounted for 51.8 percent of mobile phone sales in the second quarter of 2013, resulting in smartphone sales surpassing feature phone sales for the first time.

"Asia/Pacific, Latin America and Eastern Europe exhibited the highest smartphone growth rates of 74.1 percent, 55.7 percent and 31.6 percent, respectively, as smartphone sales grew in all regions."

This probably won't come as much of a surprise, but Gartner claimed that Samsung retained the number one position in global smartphone sales, accounting for 31.7 percent of the market. Equally unsurprising was that Apple has maintained the number two spot, with 14.2 percent share.

What actually is surprising is that LG took the number three spot in the list, closely followed by Lenovo, with the firms accounting for 5.1 percent and 4.7 percent of the market, respectively.

The biggest shock here is Lenovo, as some might not even be aware that the Chinese PC company makes phones. In fact, Gartner revealed that Lenovo's smartphone sales grew 144 percent year on year, thanks to its success in China.

Gartner said, "Lenovo continues to rely heavily on its home market in China, which represents more than 95 percent of its sales. It remains challenging for Lenovo to expand outside China as it has to strengthen its direct channel as well as its relationships with communications service providers."

In terms of operating systems, Gartner's figures are largely in line with those released by IDC last week. The firm's analysis shows that Android accounts for 79 percent of the market, followed by iOS and Windows Phone at 14.2 percent and three percent, respectively.

If these numbers are anything to go by, it looks like Microsoft can relax about retaining the number three spot, with Blackberry's market share dropping from 5.2 percent in the second quarter of 2012 to 2.7 percent in the second quarter this year. No wonder Blackberry has put itself up for sale. µ


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