Report: Samsung and Apple dominate Q4 with 51 percent of global smartphone market

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Q4 2012 estimates from Strategy Analytics

While Samsung has conveniently left specific smartphone sales numbers out of its Q4 earnings release yesterday (as usual), today we get a look at the latest estimates for the quarter coming from research firms Strategy Analytics and IDC.

We know that Apple sold 47.8 million iPhones during the quarter, and today both research firms put Samsung just over 63 million units for Q4 2012. That means Samsung was able to capture 29 percent of the market last quarter (up from 36.2 million units and 22.5-percent of the market in the year ago quarter). Apple is of course a close second among the top five smartphone vendors with 21.8-percent—down slightly from the 23 percent it held in the same quarter last year. In Q4 2011, Apple and Samsung were neck and neck at about 23 percent of the market each.

The increasing market share for Apple, and especially Samsung, over the past year comes at the expense of Nokia. It experienced a drop from 16 percent to 5 percent of the market during the past year.  Read more

IDC: Android is now on 3 out of every 4 smartphones sold

IDC is out with its latest report that covers the top six smartphone operating systems by shipments and market share during Q3 2012. In the study, IDC found Android on nearly 75 percent of all smartphones shipped during the quarter, giving Android 136 million units of the 181.1 million total smartphones shipped during Q3 2012. That accounts for 91.5-percent year-over-year growth, beating out 57.3- percent year-over-year growth for Apple, and an average market growth of 46.4-percent. Apple shipped 26.9 million iPhones, in comparison, giving the company 14.9-percent of the market in the third quarter. Samsung is once again the top Android vendor:

Android, having topped the 100 million unit mark last quarter, reached a new record level in a single quarter. By comparison, Android’s total volumes for the quarter were greater than the total number of smartphones shipped in 2007, the year that Android was officially announced. Samsung once again led all vendors in this space, but saw its market share decline as numerous smaller vendors increased their production.

iOS was a distant second place to Android, but was the only other mobile operating system to amass double-digit market share for the quarter. The late quarter launch of the iPhone 5 and lower prices on older models prevented total shipment volumes from slipping to 3Q11 levels. But without a splashy new OS-driven feature like Siri in 2011 and FaceTime in 2010, the iPhone 5 relied on its larger, but not wider, screen and LTE connectivity to drive growth.