Apple surpasses Motorola mobile sales

Ronny Kerr · May 18, 2010 · Short URL:

iSuppli report shows smartphones to be the 'hottest segment of the cell phone market'

smartphonesSmartphones are moving up in the world and Apple is riding the tide.

Having shipped 8.75 million iPhones in the first quarter of 2010, Apple has managed to take hold of a 3% share of the global cell phone market, according to a new iSuppli report. Over the year, shipments have grown by 130.7% (3.79 million units were sold in the first quarter of 2009) and the company's mobile sales rose 0.2% from the quarter just before.

Motorola shipments dropped 29% from the quarter just before, with 8.5 million units sold.

In terms of total ranking, Apple has risen three spots from ninth to sixth and Motorola has slipped two spots from sixth to eighth. Next in ranking for Apple to surpass is RIM, which saw shipments grow by 3.6%

iSuppli calls this swapping of two mobile giants' rankings--Motorola and Apple's--a "changing of the guard" in the mobile industry because it signifies the increasing triumph of smartphones over standard cell phones.

"Smartphones represent the hottest segment of the cell phone market," explains Tina Teng, senior analyst, wireless communications, for iSuppli, "with unit shipment growth of 35.5 percent expected in 2010, compared to 11.3 percent for the overall mobile handset business."

Apple and RIM are unique in that they only sell smartphones. All others carry traditional mobile phones, sometimes in addition to smartphones.

Nokia remains on top, but its market share too has dropped slightly from last quarter's 37.9% to this quarter's 37.4%.

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