Worldwide mobile phone sales up 14% in Q1, says report

Global mobile phone sales continued to surge in the first quarter, when shipments reached 282 million despite an economic downturn, a research firm said.

An Associated Press report also quoted research firm Strategy Analytics as saying that Nokia kept its top position, slightly increasing market share to 41% in the three months ended March 31. Samsung Electronics in South Korea remained at No. 2, boosting its market share to 16%, while US handset maker Motorola fell below 10% but stayed in third place.

'Demand remained strong in emerging markets, particularly in Africa and Asia,' according to the Strategy Analytics report. 'Korean vendors LG and Samsung were the star performers, growing two to four times faster than the industry average.'

Motorola 'slumped and is in real danger of being overtaken by LG,' whose market share rose to 8.6% from 7.2% at the end of last year, according to the report.

The Associated Press report further quoted the research group saying Nokia, selling 116 million handsets in the quarter, maintained a 'commanding' share. Last week, the Finland-based company said it sold 115 million handsets and its market share fell to 39% from 40% in the previous quarter.

In the US, Nokia's market share dwindled from 20% to some 7% in just two years, the report said, cautioning that Nokia's share of the smart phone market had fallen from about 50% in early 2007 to 44%.