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Samsung ships twice as many smartphones as Apple, but smaller brands chipping away at lead: IDC

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Topshelf smartphone camera comparison 2
Topshelf smartphone camera comparison 2

As the smartphone market continues to grow, smaller companies are continuing to gain on the industry’s biggest manufacturers. That’s the message from research firm IDC, whose latest shipment estimates show a measurable market share drop of 1.8 percentage points for Samsung and 2.5 for Apple, whose respective shares now sit at 30.4 and 13.1 percent. For the first time, that means that Samsung is now shipping more than twice as many smartphones as its closest rival, with 72.4 million units to Apple's 31.2.

Despite the share drop from the two market leaders, the whole smartphone industry grew by over 50 percent from a year ago, says IDC. The biggest recipients were LG and Lenovo; both companies’ shipments grew over 100 percent during the past twelve months, pushing their respective market share numbers up by 1.4 and 1.8 percent, and leaving each with roughly five percent of the market.

Brands not in the top five range from former champs like Nokia and HTC to lesser known names like Alcatel and Huawei accounted for just over 40 percent of smartphone shipments this quarter, says IDC, a gain of about two percentage points.

Back in April, IDC reported that smartphones are now outselling feature phones worldwide, a trend that shows no signs of slowing down. Compared to the 52 percent growth in smartphone shipments over the year, the mobile market as a whole only grew by six percent.