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Samsung Overtakes Nokia, Becomes World's No.1 Handset Maker For First Time-Strategy Analytics

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HONG KONG -(Dow Jones)- Samsung Electronics Co. (005930.SE) for the first time ever became the world's biggest mobile handset vendor in the first quarter of 2012, capturing a quarter of the global market and overtaking struggling Nokia Corp. (NOK), according to data released Friday by London-based research firm Strategy Analytics.

In the quarter ended March, the South Korean electronics giant shipped 36% more handsets than a year earlier and also outsold archrival Apple Inc. (AAPL) in the smartphone segment. Samsung's smartphone shipments more than tripled on robust demand for its Galaxy handsets, the research firm said. Samsung held a 30.6% share of the world's smartphone market, while Apple followed with a 24.1% share, it said.

The latest mobile shipment numbers follow stronger-than-expected quarterly earnings this week from both Samsung and Apple, which together dominate the smartphone market.

In the first quarter, Samsung held a 25.4% share of the global mobile handset market, shipping 93.5 million units worldwide, compared with 68.9 million a year earlier, the data showed. Of those handsets, smartphone shipments jumped to 44.5 million units from 12.6 million.

Nokia held a 22.5% share as its shipments dropped 24% to 82.7 million units in the quarter.

Apple also enjoyed strong growth in the quarter, with iPhone shipments rising 89% to 35.1 million units. Its share of the world's overall handset market rose to 9.5% from 5.2%.

-By Juro Osawa, Dow Jones Newswires; 852 2832 2341; juro.osawa@dowjones.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

April 27, 2012 00:37 ET (04:37 GMT)

Copyright (c) 2012 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

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