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By 29 July 2013 | Categories: news

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The latest market research from data analytics company ABI Research has revealed that global smartphone shipments represents more than half (52%) of all mobile phone shipments for the second quarter in a row.

According to ABI Research, feature phone shipments declined by 20% year-on-year to 195 million units. The company attributes this drop to low-cost smartphone manufacturers that make affordable devices available with increased specifications, which are eating away at feature phone sales.

Shipments of smartphones maintained a healthy growth rate of 5.5% quarter-on-quarter and almost 44% year-on-year. Michael Morgan, ABI Research senior analyst, stated that both Samsung and Apple delivered better than expected Q2 results.

Suwon and Cupertino still on top...for now

Korean tech giant Samsung leads the mobile phone OEM (original equipment manufacturer) pack with an estimated 408 million mobile handsets and 214 million smartphones shipped during Q2 2013.

The high-end of the smartphone market continued to perform well in Q2 2013, as the Samsung Galaxy S4 (review) and Apple iPhones outpaced the overall market. Despite the strong performance of these range topping devices, Apple’s market share (14.6%) dropped to its lowest level since Q3 2011. The market research firm attributes this share loss to the success of the Samsung Galaxy S4 launch, coupled with the continued growth of low-cost and mass market smartphone shipments.

“The second half of 2013 will be defined by fierce competition between price-aggressive OEMs moving toward the middle tiers for increased margins while at the same time top tier OEMs are diversifying portfolios into the middle in search of continued growth,” said ABI Research senior practice director Jeff Orr.

ABI Research expects an increase on margin pressures for the premium smartphone segment where Apple and Samsung thrive, as rivals the likes of Huawei, ZTE and Lenovo look to compete more effectively within this top tier space.

In other mobile related news, LG recently launched its second generation Optimus L series in South Africa, with the Optimus L7 II and L5 II being the first of the new series to become available locally.

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