Contact Center Industry News

TMCNet:  Samsung pulls away from Apple in smartphone market, research firm reports

[December 18, 2012]

Samsung pulls away from Apple in smartphone market, research firm reports

Dec 18, 2012 (San Jose Mercury News - McClatchy-Tribune News Service via COMTEX) -- Samsung's lead over Apple in smartphone manufacturing increased sharply in 2012, IHS reported Tuesday, as the South Korean company took the lead in overall cellphone manufacturing for the first time.

In its preliminary report on cellphone manufacturing in 2012, the research firm reported that Samsung shipped 28 percent of the world's smartphones this year, while Apple accounted for 20 percent; in 2011, the margin was much closer, as Samsung accounted for 20 percent of the market and Apple owned 19 percent.

Samsung also displaced Nokia as the top cellphone manufacturer in the world, displacing the Finnish manufacturer from the top spot for the first time since 1998, IHS reported. Nokia had held on to the top spot due to its feature phones, which do not feature the touch screen and advanced uses of a smartphone; however, smartphones' continued growth finally pushed Nokia down to No. 2.

Smartphone shipments increased by 35.5 percent from 2011 to 2012, IHS reported, while overall cellphone shipments increased only 1 percent. IHS predicts that smartphones will account for 56 percent of all cellphones shipped in 2013, which would be the first time smartphones were a majority of the mobile-phone market.

"The competitive reality of the cellphone market in 2012 was 'live by the smartphone; die by the smartphone,' " Wayne Lam, senior analyst for wireless communications at IHS, said in Tuesday's announcement. "Smartphones represent the fastest-growing segment of the cellphone market _ and will account for nearly half of all wireless handset shipments for all of 2012. Samsung's successes and Nokia's struggles in the cellphone market this year were determined entirely by the two companies' divergent fortunes in the smartphone sector." Apple is third in the overall cellphone category, accounting for 10 percent of shipments, while Samsung claimed 29 percent and Nokia 24 percent.

Samsung and Apple accounted for nearly 50 percent of the smartphones shipped in 2012, as other companies suffered against the two giants. Nokia's market share in smartphones dipped from 16 percent to 5 percent, and BlackBerry maker Research in Motion fell from 11 percent to 5 percent.

Apple claims Samsung's Galaxy line of smartphones and tablets blatantly copies the Cupertino, Calif., tech giant's iPhone and iPad offerings, leading to lawsuit across the globe. A San Jose, Calif., jury found in August that Samsung had infringed on three Apple patents, awarding Apple a $1.05 billion judgment. Samsung is appealing that verdict.

___ (c)2012 San Jose Mercury News (San Jose, Calif.) Visit the San Jose Mercury News (San Jose, Calif.) at Distributed by MCT Information Services

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