Now smartphones rule global mobile market: Gartner

Bangalore, 14 August 17 2013 — The tipping point has occurred at last.  For the first time, worldwide sales of  smartphones have exceeded  the cheaper feature phones -- 225 million units to  210 units in the second quarter of  2013. went up  by 46.5 percent, compared to the same period last year, while  those of feature phones declined 21 percent.

“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,” says Anshul Gupta, principal research analyst at Gartner.  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.

Samsung maintained the No. 1 position in the global smartphone market, as its share of smartphone sales -- 71.4 million units --  reached 31.7 percent, up from 29.7 percent in the second quarter of 2012. Apple’s smartphone sales reached 32 million units in the second quarter of 2013,  with a 14.2% share, up 10.2 percent from a year ago, followed by LG with  a 5.1% share with 11.5 million units .

In the smartphone operating system (OS) market , Microsoft took over BlackBerry for the first time, taking the No. 3 spot with 3.3 percent market share in the second quarter of 2013 after Android ( 79%) and iOS (14.2%)

Samsung also leads in overall  mobile phone sales, Q 2 2013,  selling  107 million units. Slowing demand o the number 2 seller, Nokia’s mobile phone sales in the second quarter of 2013. Nokia’s mobile phone sales totaled 61 million units, down from 83 million units a year ago. Adds Gupta: “However, Nokia is facing tough competition from Android devices, especially from regional and Chinese manufacturers which are more aggressive in terms of price points.”

While sales continued to grow, Apple ( no. 3)  faced a significant drop in the ASP of its smartphones. Despite the iPhone 5 being the most popular model, its ASP declined to the lowest figure registered by Apple since the iPhone's launch in 2007.

As we reported earlier, quoting IDC, Samsung rose to the top spot in the Indian mobile phone market and the rise can largely be attributed to its gains in the smartphone market over the past two years. “The competition between top international and local vendors remained prominent in the last quarter with Samsung, Micromax and Karbonn controlling almost two-thirds of the Indian Smartphone market, however the market remained driven by low cost devices." said Manasi Yadav, Senior Market Analyst with IDC's Client Devices team.