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By 29 October 2012 | Categories: news

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Following IDC’s recent analysis of the performance of the mobile phone market during Q3 2012, mobile market research company Juniper Research (JR) reveals its figures for smartphone shipments during Q3 2012.

The analytics firm estimates that smartphone shipments exceeded 157 million during Q3 of this year, which is a fair bit less than IDC’s figure of 179.7 million. Samsung increased its lead in terms of unit shipments, as the Korean tech giant shipped a record 56.3 million smartphones according to JR.

This is nearly twice the market share of its main rival, Apple which sold 26.9 million iPhones. The company expects Apple to fare far better with iPhone 5 sales during the holiday season within Q4 2012.

Like IDC, JR asserts that Samsung’s flagship device, the Galaxy S3, played a key role in the firm’s smartphone sales success, with estimated sales of 18 million during Q3 alone. Samsung has been highly effective in leveraging its global brand strength as well as the popularity of the Google’s Android mobile operating system (OS), to drive sales of its smartphones within all price tiers.

ZTE shows significant growth, Nokia smartphone shipments decline

Another point JR and IDC have in common, is the smartphone growth experienced by Chinese smartphone maker ZTE, which shipped almost 20 million smartphones over the first three quarters of 2012.

What’s more is that ZTE’s Q3 2012 smartphone sales amounted to more than Nokia as well as BlackBerry maker RIM’s (Research In Motion’s) put together. This however is where IDC’s and JR’s figures differ, since IDC has ZTE at number four with 7.5 million smartphone shipped during Q3 2012 whilst RIM is third with 7.7 million.  

Nokia’s Windows Phone OS-based devices have yet to make a significant impact according to JR. The Finnish cellphone giant only shipped 6.3 million smartphones in the last quarter, representing a whopping 63% year-on-year drop. JR asserts that this disappointing performance could partially be attributed to consumers delaying their purchases until the release of Nokia’s new Windows Phone 8 running smartphones due in Q4 2012.

RIM’s recent results also hint at continuing problems for the Canadian smartphone and tablet maker, as its smartphone shipments for Q3 amounted to just 7.7 million, with its BlackBerry 10 operating smartphones only arriving during Q1 2013.

LG needs to re-invent, re-brand and re-build

Although vendors such as Nokia and RIM announced disappointing figures for Q3 2012, JR stated that LG managed to post a 24% quarter-on-quarter growth, courtesy of a record shipment of seven million smartphones.

The analytics company said that even though LG managed to post a profit for its smartphone business, it is still facing a challenge when competing against companies like Apple and Samsung.

According to Juniper, LG needs to improve its smartphone line-up and rebuild its position beyond the budget and mid-range market segment. This in order to augment its profit margins and more effectively compete against players including Huawei, Motorola Mobility and HTC.

In related news, market research company Strategy Analytics latest research recently revealed that there are now more than one billion smartphones in use worldwide.

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