Samsung boosts its global smartphone sales, increases lead over Apple

Samsung has strengthened its grip on the global smartphone market, with the late May launch of the Galaxy S3 helping it clock up 48.7m sales in the three months from April to June this year.

That gives the Korean company a worldwide market share for the quarter of 32.3%, while Apple sold some 26m phones in the same period, over than a quarter less than it sold in January to March this year.

Not helped by growing rumours of a new iPhone to be launched next month, Apple's market share fell to 17.2%, against 26% in the first three months of 2012.

Between them, Apple and Samsung control almost half of the world smartphone market last quarter, with Nokia third on 6.8%, HTC on 6.12% and Sony on 4.9%.

And the Samsung performance is even stronger in Europe, where the company has over 40% of the smartphone market, and 41.4% of all mobile phone sales.

It has held the top position in the US market for the past four years, and has a 25.7% share of the global phone market, shipping 93m mobiles in the last three months.

At the moment Korean rival LG only ranks eighth in worldwide smartphone sales, but is enjoying a major boost from the success of its LTE (long term evolution) next-generation smartphone models.

Earlier this year it was celebrating 1m total sales of the new models (above) – now it's claiming 2m sales back home in Korea, and the same number in the USA, around 15 months since its first US LTE model was offered by Verizon.

The sales boost is down to the success of models including the Nitro HD, which is the US version of the Optimus HD. It also sells its Spectrum LTE phone on the AT&T network, and has recently rolled out the Viper 4G (above) through Sprint, making it the major LTE handset supplier to the country's biggest telecoms companies.

It's expected to strengthen its position further with the arrival in the States of the Optimus LTE II and Optimus View models in the next couple of months: both models are hits back home in Korea, each selling more than 500,000 units in the past month.

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Andrew has written about audio and video products for the past 20+ years, and been a consumer journalist for more than 30 years, starting his career on camera magazines. Andrew has contributed to titles including What Hi-Fi?, GramophoneJazzwise and Hi-Fi CriticHi-Fi News & Record Review and Hi-Fi Choice. I’ve also written for a number of non-specialist and overseas magazines.