Mobile phone shipments top 1.6 billion units

News Stacy Warden 11:16, Jan 25 2013

Apple, Samsung, Nokia push global phone shipments to an eye-popping high

Smartphone adoption has grown immensely. But if there was ever any doubt, the latest research from Strategy Analytics puts it to rest. According to the firm, an eye-popping 1.6 billion mobile phones were shipped globally in 2012 alone. Yes, that number accounts for all mobile phones, but 700 million were smartphones. 

Not surprisingly, the biggest players for pushing handsets were Samsung, Nokia and Apple (interestingly enough, in that exact order). But when we just look at smartphone shipments, it lines up like this: Samsung (213 million devices shipped), Apple (135 million), Nokia (35 million). 

As Engadget points out, these smartphone makers have been holding it down since last February, and it doesn't look like that's about to change any time soon. Though, shipments do look to be hitting a more steady mark for some. Apple, for one, had less growth in 2012 than it did in 2011. Some believe that could level out the playing ground a bit, at least where market share is concerned. 

Certainly, Samsung must be pleased with such information -- especially since its Galaxy series is continually growing in popularity. The Korean smartphone maker took 34 percent of total smartphone shipments in Q4 2012. By comparison, Apple reached just 24.5 percent that same quarter.

There are, of course, real factors to be taken into account here. Like the fact that Samsung offers more budget-friendly smartphones and more options, in general. Apple, on the other hand, slaps a wildly expensive tag on each new version of its iPhone, and is far more sparse with its updates. 


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