Smartphone sales hit quarter of a million
Smartphones outsold feature phones in Q3 for the second quarter running, accounting for 55% of the overall handset market, according to Gartner.
Worldwide smartphone sales reached a record 250.2 million units during the third quarter, representing a year-on-year growth rate of 45.8%, the research firm estimates.
This compares to total mobile phone sales of 455.6 million, for a comparatively anaemic 5.7% growth.
Asia-Pacific was both the fastest-growing smartphone market – with sales increasing 77.3% - and the fastest-growing overall handset market, with sales up 11.9%.
Handset sales in Western Europe meanwhile returned to growth for the first quarter this year, and the Americas also contributed to the global growth.
“Sales of feature phones continued to decline and the decrease was more pronounced in markets where the average selling price (ASP) for feature phones was much closer to the ASP of affordable smartphones,” said Anshul Gupta, principal research analyst at Gartner.
“In markets such as China and Latin America, demand for feature phones fell significantly as users rushed to replace their old models with smartphones.”
The company projects that global mobile phone sales will reach 1.81 billion units in 2013, up 3.4% from 2012.
Gartner has also joined IDC in estimating that Android's OS share of the smartphone market has surpassed 80%.
In August, Gartner estimated that smartphones had outsold feature phones for the first time during the second quarter, making up 51.8% of handset sales.