Shipments up 42pc in Q4 as Samsung accounts for a third

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Manufacturer shipped 63 million smartphones in the quarter, with overall market shipments topping 200 million in 2012

Smartphone shipments exceeded 200 million in Q4 2012 and reached 671 in total last year – representing growth of almost 42 per cent year-on-year. This is according to mobile analyst firm Juniper Research.

Samsung shipped a record 63 million smartphones and accounted for almost a third of all shipments in the quarter, with sales of its flagship Galaxy S III device (pictured) surpassing 40 million last November.

Apple posted lower than expected iPhone sales of around 47.8 million, which still represented a record quarter for the company. Juniper said that with Samsung leading the market, Apple will need to continue focusing on innovation, whilst retaining its brand leadership.

Nokia shipped 6.6 million smartphones in the quarter as it returned to profit, with its Lumia range making up two thirds of this figure with 4.4 million shipments. Last year, it shipped 35 million smartphones, down 54 per cent from 2011.

RIM’s recent results are expected to account for almost 6.7 million smartphone shipments in Q4 and over 31 million for the year. Juniper said that with the imminent release and launch of BlackBerry 10 along with a new line of smartphones, the manufacturer will struggle to regain significant market share this year.

Huawei posted sales of $35 billion last year and with the introduction of 23 smartphone models, Juniper expects the company to have shipped almost 20 million smartphones in 2012.

The research firm said that while smartphone manufacturers such as LG and ZTE have managed to maintain their smartphone market shares, they are still facing challenges when competing against the premium brands, and are introducing a number of new product ranges and marketing activities to maintain their visibility.

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