Gartner has released its analysis of the mobile market in the 3rd quarter of 2012. Smartphones sales on the whole have surged. In total, 169.2 million smartphones were shipped in the last three month period (ending September). That’s a huge 47% increase on the same period last year. In simple figures, that’s 54 million more smartphones. In terms of market share, Android is miles ahead of the pack with 72% of smartphone shipments, having more than doubled its figure from Q3 2011.
Just in case you think it’s spelling doom for Apple, take a look at the figures. Although its market share has slipped 1%, its actual shipped units have increased from 17.3 million to 23.4 million units. That’s a 35% increase in devices, sold in one of the iPhone’s quietest quarters of the past couple of years. So, where is Android grabbing its new customers from? In short: BlackBerry (down almost 4 million) and Symbian (down a massive 15 million year-on-year). And also, with so many very low-end smartphones running Google’s operating system, it’s virtually got the entire global prepaid market to itself.
One positive – from my point of view – is Microsoft’s success. Although its market share is only 2.4%, it’s more than doubled the number of devices running its mobile software. Side note: who the heck is buying Bada phones?
From a hardware standpoint, Samsung and Nokia are ruling the mobile market as a whole (including “dumb phones”) . Between them, they shipped 42% of all the mobile phones in the world last quarter. Still, rather impressively, Apple makes it in to third place with 5.5% of shipments, despite only offering three aging smartphones and no “dumb phones”.