Sales of mobile phones drop while smartphone sales increase – Gartner

14 Nov 2012

The Samsung Galaxy SIII smartphone

Worldwide sales of mobile phones have dropped in the third quarter of 2012 while sales of smartphones around the globe have risen, Gartner, Inc, reported.

Mobile phone sales amounted to nearly 428m units in the third quarter of this year, a 3.1pc decline from the same period last year.

Smartphone sales reached 169.2m in Q3 2012, accounting for 39.6pc of total mobile phone sales, as smartphone sales jumped 46.9pc from Q3 of 2011. 

While the mobile phone market declined year-on-year, Gartner analysts said there were positive signs for the industry during the third quarter. 

“After two consecutive quarters of decline in mobile phone sales, demand has improved in both mature and emerging markets as sales increased sequentially,” said Anshul Gupta, principal research analyst at Gartner.

“In China, sales of mobile phones grew, driven by sales of smartphones, while demand of feature phones remained weak. In mature markets, we finally saw replacement sales pick up with the launch of new devices in the quarter.” 

Apple and Samsung dominated the smartphone market.

“Both vendors together controlled 46.5pc of the smartphone market, leaving a handful of vendors fighting over a distant third spot,” said Gupta. 

Nokia slipped from No 3 in the second quarter of 2012 to No 7 in smartphone sales in the third quarter of 2012.

RIM claimed the No 3 spot with HTC just behind at No 4.


Tina Costanza was a journalist and sub-editor at Silicon Republic