Apple 'crowned' global smart phone leader

Apple 'crowned' global smart phone leader

Apple 'crowned' global smart phone leader

Apple had claimed the global top spot by shipping 20.3 million iPhones in its quarterly results released in the third week of July.

In its Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker released Thursday, the Massachusetts-based IDC said, "The smartphone market crowned a new leader in 2Q11, and its name is Apple.''

Out of the 106.5 million units sold globally in the second quarter, the IDC said Apple shipped 20.3 million iPhones, raising its global market share to 19.1 percent - 141.7 percent up since the same quarter last year.

The worldwide smart phone market jumped 65.4 percent year over year during the quarter.

Though Research In Motion (RIM) registered gains by shipping 12.4 million BlackBerries, its market share slipped to the fourth spot behind Nokia, the report said.

At number two, Samsung shipped 17.3 million smart phones during the period, posting a growth of 16.2 percent, followed closely by Nokia with 16.7 million shipments.

"Ever since the first iPhone launched in 2007, Apple has made market-setting strides in hardware, software, and channel development to grab mindshare and market share.

Demand has been so strong that even models that have been out for one or two years are still being sought out. With an expected refresh later this year, volumes are set to reach higher levels,'' said Ramon Llamas, senior research analyst with IDC's Mobile Phone Technology and Trends team.

But Kevin Restivo, senior research analyst with IDC's Worldwide Mobile Phone Tracker, added, "There is no runaway leader in the market, which means there could easily be further Top 5 vendor changes to come.

"The smartphone market leadership change signifies the parity that comes with a fast-growing market such as smart phones.''

According to IDC projections for the whole year, the worldwide smartphone market will grow 55 percent over 2010.

"The first half of the year has demonstrated strong growth for the smartphone market. The second half of the year will bring new flagship models and refreshed user experiences to market. These will keep smart phones well out in front of the market, and keep growth on an upward trajectory,'' said Llamas.