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IDC: Apple past ZTE to be 4th-largest phone maker worldwide

updated 10:30 am EDT, Fri April 29, 2011

IDC says iPhone passes ZTE for market share in Q1

IDC in a roundup of final phone market share saw Apple move faster than its rivals. Its 18.65 million iPhones shipped in the winter nearly doubled its market share form year to year to give it five percent of the total cellphone market. The growth was enough to push it past ZTE, which even with fast growth from low-end Android phones in China was overtaken at 15.1 million phones and 4.1 percent share.

All of the top three phone makers above Apple and ZTE lost share during the period. Nokia correctly predicted a drop to 29 percent share that kept it out in front but with a much smaller lead. Samsung's own shipment drop saw it fall to 18.8 percent as its smartphones weren't enough to offset drops in its basic phone business. LG saw its phone shipments drop outright and sink to 24.5 million phones and 6.6 percent, putting Apple in striking distance.

RIM is notably back out of the top five at 14.9 million and has warned that it expects lower BlackBerry shipments.

With the exception of Nokia, which doesn't expect its market share to recover until sometime after the Windows Phone switch, the other non-Apple phone makers are currently in a race to shore up their reputations for smartphones before they lose too much of their absolute market share to Apple, HTC, and others that focused on smartphones almost from the start. The LG Revolution,Samsung Galaxy S II, and ZTE Skate are are all being treated as vital to gaining share.

Most of Apple's faster rise in the winter has been credited to the 2.2 million Verizon iPhones it sold, which while much smaller than its GSM numbers was enough to stall Android in the US.

by MacNN Staff



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