Google’s Android operating system has continued to dominate the smartphone market in Q1 2011, holding the top spot for the second quarter running, according to a new market data report from research firm Canalys.
The Android platform, holding a 32.9% in Q4 2010, rose 2.1% over the last quarter with 35.7 million units shipping during that period. This was helped by a increased sales in the Asia Pacific region, after shipments grew 98% to 37.3 million units, putting it ahead of Europe, the Middle East and Africa region for the first time in over three years.
Sales of Android handsets were boosted by HTC, Samsung, LG, Motorola and Sony Ericsson in the first quarter, with each manufacturer shipping over 3 million Android devices each. This ensured that Samsung and HTC were amongst the top five global smartphone vendors, ranking alongside Nokia, Apple and RIM. Apple’s market share continued to boom, hitting 19% as RIM’ fell, thanks largely to lack of handset launches and focus of attention on getting the BlackBerry PlayBook to market.
As worldwide smartphone shipments grew 83% to 101 million units, Nokia maintained its position at the top of smartphone sales with 24.2 million units shipped, growing 13% year-on-year despite it’s drastic reorganisation after the announcement Microsoft deal.
The rise in popularity of 4G devices helped influence US market shipments in Q1, Canalys estimates that sales of such handsets topped 600,000 units in that period.
One interesting part of Canalys’ report was its estimate of Windows Phone 7 shipments. With rumours circulating that sales of Microsoft-powered smartphones had only reached 650,000 units in the first few months, the research firm ups figures for its second quarter, putting sales of the devices at around 2 million units:
“Samsung also shipped nearly 3.5 million bada operating system-based smart phones, outperforming total shipments of Windows Phone devices by more than a million units.“