Samsung overtakes Nokia as world's No. 1 phone maker
May 1, 2012, 12:08 am TWN
SAN FRANCISCO -- The bad news keeps calling for Nokia.
Just days after its debt rating was downgraded to junk status by the ratings agency Fitch, the Finnish phone maker has lost its crown as the world's top maker of cellphones to Korean rival Samsung, according to industry reports issued Friday.
The estimates, by Strategy Analytics and iSuppli, said that Samsung sold 93 million mobile phones in the quarter, for 25.4 percent of the global market. This compares to the 83 million handsets sold by Nokia, which saw a drop from the 114 million units it sold in the previous quarter.
The turnaround ended Nokia's 14-year reign as the world's top mobile phone maker. It comes as Nokia is trying to bolster its flagging fortunes in the lucrative and fast-growing smartphone market by launching devices based on Microsoft's Windows Phone operating system, a distant third to Google's Android-based phones and Apple's iPhone.
The report said that Apple sold 35 million iPhones in the quarter, with Samsung selling 32 million smartphones. The Korean electronics giant is set to launch a new version of its popular Galaxy smartphone in the coming weeks.
“It's clear that the company's continued investments in smartphone hardware and software research and development are paying off,” said Wayne Lam, senior wireless analyst at IHS. “Samsung is likely to make further progress in market share in 2012.”