Smartphone shipments outnumber feature phones for first time ever: IDC

More smartphones were shipped in Q1 of 2013, than feature phones, which is a first, according to data from the International Data Corporation (IDC).


More smartphones were shipped in Q1 of 2013, than feature phones, which is a first, according to data from the International Data Corporation (IDC).

The firm says that vendors shipped a total of 418.6 million mobile phones in Q1 of 2013 compared to 402.4 million units in the first quarter of 2012 and 483.2 million units in the fourth quarter of 2012.

"Phone users want computers in their pockets. The days where phones are used primarily to make phone calls and send text messages are quickly fading away," said Kevin Restivo, senior research analyst with IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker. "As a result, the balance of smartphone power has shifted to phone makers that are most dependent on smartphones."

Of course, Samsung still remains the undisputed king of smartphones and overall mobile phones. Samsung's lead is massive as by the end of Q1 2013, it had shipped more units than the next four vendors combined. The company shipped 115 million units of mobile phones and currently has 27.5 percent market share. The report notes that all eyes are now on how Samsung's new Tizen-powered smartphones will look and feel.

Nokia was number two as far as overall mobile vendors were concerned, however the company's shipments reflected a negative25.1 percent growth year-over-year.

 Smartphone shipments outnumber feature phones for first time ever: IDC

Samsung Galaxy SIII is seen in this file photo. AP

Apple was at number 3 in the overall mobile market, and number two in the smartphone segment with the company shipping37.4 million smartphones which gave it a market share of8.9 percent. The report noted that Apple hit a new first-quarter high thanks in part to the iPhone 5, but this was the first time since Q3 2009 that Apple posted single-digit year-over-year growth rate.

LG returned to the smartphone Top 5 after a two-quarter absence, thanks to its L series and the Nexus 4. LTE-enabled devices, including the Optimus G series, also contributed to its success. LG shipped15.4 million mobile units, which was a12.4 percent increase in year-over-year change.

ZTE was at number 5 in the overall mobile vendors list, with a strong showing in Asia/Pacific and North America, but a small presence in EMEA and Latin America despite its previous success with low-end feature phones there. ZTE shipped 13.5 million phones in the quarter.


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