Global Smartphone Sales Boom By 47%
More than 427m mobile phones have been sold globally in the third quarter of 2012, with smartphones sales up 47% compared to a year ago.
Market analysis firm Gartner said a rapid spread of smartphones means that a total of 169m of the hi-tech gadgets were sold in the period.
Smartphones are now bought at the rate of 1.83m per day around the world.
Total phone sales also increased by 8m units from Q2 to Q3, however there are signs that mobile phone possession take up rates are easing as 3% fewer phones were sold compared to Q3 of 2011.
Data shows the market is still dominated by three disparate nations - South Korea's Samsung, Finland's Nokia and the US' Apple.
Ailing Nokia, however, saw its market share drop by more than 20% in the period, falling from 23.9% in Q3 of 2011 to 19.2% in Q3 this year.
According to Gartner, in the same period Samsung's market share rose 4.2% and Apple's rose 1.6%.
Second-tier Asian makers such as China's Huawei and ZTE, and South Korea's LG also saw more modest growth rates in Q3.
Canada's Research In Motion (RIM) saw its share plunge 30% because of lacklustre BlackBerry models.
RIM has suffered a four-year slide in its stock price but hopes a resuscitation of its fortunes will occur with the launch of the BlackBerry 10 on January 30.
It's market share is now just 2.1%, just above Taiwanese firm HTC at 2%.
Motorola Mobility, owned by Google, also dropped its share from 2.5% in 2011 to 2% this year.
Meanwhile software continue to be dominated by the Google Android operating system, with 72.4% of all smartphones sold using it - up from 52.5% in 2011.
Apple's iOS trails in the software stakes with 13.9% market share, down from 15% last year.
Microsoft's Window phone system now stands at 2.4%, up from 1.5% in 2011, while Samsung's Bada jumped to 3% from 2.2% previously.
The big software operating system loser has been Symbian - a descendant of Britain's Psion - which dropped from 16.9% penetration to 2.6% now.