What is in this article?:
- Smartphone Sales Exploded in 2012
- Strategy Analytics / ABI Research Reports
The South Korean giant, Samsung, captured 29% of the smartphone market, to Apple's 21.8%, and 23% of the overall market, ahead of Nokia's 17.9%.
WASHINGTON -- Global smartphone sales soared in 2012, taking a huge slice of a mobile phone market that was otherwise flat, survey data showed Friday.
A report by the research firm IDC showed a 44% jump in smartphone sales for the year, with 712 million units sold. That accounted for 45.5% of all mobile phone shipments.
The rest of the mobile phone market was lackluster, suggesting customers were trading in their older handsets for smartphones. The global market for all mobile phones grew just 1.2% to 1.7 billion units, IDC said.
IDC said Samsung (IW 1000/15) extended its dominance of the market in both smartphones and overall mobile phones.
But a big surge came from Chinese manufacturers Huawei and ZTE (IW 1000/327), which broke into the top ranks of smartphone vendors thanks to growth in emerging markets, IDC said.
Huawei grabbed 4.9% of the smartphone market, making it the third largest, and ZTE was in fifth place with 4.3% share, just behind Japan's Sony (IW 1000/39) at 4.5%.
"The fact that Huawei and ZTE now find themselves among the top five smartphone vendors marks a significant shift for the global market," said IDC analyst Ramon Llamas.
"Both companies have grown volumes by focusing on the mass market, but in recent quarters they have turned their attention toward higher-end devices. In addition, both companies have pushed the envelope in terms of industrial design with larger displays and smaller form factors, as well as innovative applications and experiences."