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Samsung tops global smartphone, LTE phone sales

May 20, 2012 - 19:52 By Park Hyung-ki
Global display market shrinks in first quarter

Samsung Electronics has become the biggest seller of mobile phones, smartphones and LTE phones in the world, according to reports.

In the global smartphone market, Samsung continued to show its prowess, edging out Nokia for the first time in the first quarter of this year, Strategy Analytics, a market research firm said.

Samsung sold a total of 92.5 million mobile phones, accounting for 25 percent globally, surpassing the 22.4 market share of Nokia, which had been the top phone maker since 1998. Apple had a market share of 9.5 percent in the first quarter.

North America continued to be Samsung Electronics’ biggest market, where it has had the top spot for 15 consecutive quarters.

Samsung’s LTE smartphones accounted for 57 percent of market share, followed by Motorola’s 17 percent and LG Electronics’ 13 percent.

However, the research firm noted that the LTE smartphone market is expected to face tougher competition as Apple plans to release all-new LTE-powered phones in the second half of this year.

In the meantime, the global display market has overall dwindled, with only 3-D television sets seeing an increase of two fold in sales in the first quarter of 2012.

According to a report by DisplaySearch, a global market research firm, the TV industry saw its sales decrease to 51.2 million sets in the first quarter, down 8 percent from 55.5 million a year earlier.

Analysts said that this is in part due to tightening consumer spending especially in the Western economies hit by the financial crisis.

Samsung Electronics remained the top TV maker with a market share of 21 percent, up 3 percentage points from a year ago, followed by LG Electronics’ 16 percent market share. Japanese display manufacturers such as Sony and Panasonic saw their market shares remain in single digits.

The 3-D TV market, however, enjoyed an increase of 245 percent to some 7.2 million, down from 2 million in the same period, the research firm noted.

LG Electronics was particularly highlighted as its 3-D TV saw its market share double to 16 percent in the first quarter, closing the gap with Samsung Electronics whose share decreased 9 percentage points to 25 percent.

Samsung Electronics still remains the top 3-D TV supplier globally. Korea’s 3-D TVs account for more than 40 percent of the total worldwide.

By Park Hyong-ki (