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IDC: Samsung increases smartphone lead over Apple as Nokia, RIM, and HTC flounder

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IDC says Samsung's Q2 smartphone shipments were 50.2 million, putting it well ahead of Apple and other manufacturers. RIM, HTC, and Nokia saw a drop in overall shipments and marketshare.

iPhone, Android, WindowsPhone7
iPhone, Android, WindowsPhone7

Samsung today posted extremely healthy financials for Q2 2012, and analysts have agreed that its smartphone division is well ahead of the rest of the competition. IDC says Samsung's Q2 smartphone shipments were 50.2 million, while Strategy Analytics reports a slightly higher 50.5 million figure.

IDC's figures reveal that Samsung's smartphone shipments grew 172.8 percent year-over-year, giving the company an industry-leading 32.6 percent marketshare, almost double that of its nearest competitor. Apple was in second place, shipping an estimated 26 million iPhones for a 16.9 percent share of the market. It's worth noting that shipments and sales are not the same thing: Apple sold 35.1 million iPhones in the second quarter, and the discrepancy is likely due to leftover inventory from previous months. Samsung also increased its lead over Nokia in overall mobile shipments (including, but not limited to smartphones), almost hitting the 100 million mark for the quarter by shipping over 97.8 million units. IDC's report reveals that, for the first time, Samsung is shipping more smartphones than featurephones.

So what of the rest of the pack? Nokia is a distant third with 10.2 million smartphones shipped (a large portion of which are likely to be running Symbian) and 6.6 percent marketshare, while HTC and ZTE are third and fourth with 8.8 million and 8 million shipments, respectively. IDC pegs ZTE's year-over-year growth at a staggering 300 percent, thanks largely to strong sales in the manufacturer's native China. Conversely, HTC's year-over-year change is negative 24.1 percent, despite the launch of the company's well-received One series. LG remains the world's fifth largest phone manufacturer thanks to its featurephone business, but doesn't rank high enough in smartphone sales to escape the 'others' category. RIM, which was placed fourth in IDC's Q2 2011 report with 11.6 percent of the smartphone market, has now been relegated to join LG in 'others' anonymity. While IDC's numbers are not a foolproof guide for smartphone sales, they're a good indication of the state of the market today.