More device owners are dumping their dumb phones for smartphones as many have done recently. Data from research firm Gartner showed that for the second quarter of 2013, smartphone sales for the first time exceeded that of feature or dumb phones, accounting for 51.8 per cent of the market share.
The shift toward smartphones was because of the flooding of the market of cheap smartphones that run on Android OS.
Samsung continued to dominate the market, increasing its market share to 24.7 per cent compared to 21.5 per cent for the same quarter a year ago. The South Korean tech giant sold 107,526 units in Q2 2013m up from 90,432 units a year ago.
While Nokia suffered a 5 per cent reduction in market share from 19.9 per cent to 14 per cent, it was still in second place, selling 60,953 units.
In far third place is Apple, which actually increased its market share to 7.3 per cent from 6.9 per cent by selling 31,899 units.
Occupying the 4th to 9th spots are LG, ZTE, Huawei, Lenovo, TCL Communication, Sony Mobile and Yulong.
Gartner explained the fast uptake of smartphone sales to the popularity of the device in the emerging markets, mainly Asia-Pacific, Latin America and Eastern Europe. Asia logged a 74.1 per cent growth, while Latin America registered 55.7 per cent.
Commenting on the trend, Anshul Gupta, principal research analyst of Gartner, explained, "With second quarter of 2013 sales are broadly on track, we see little need to adjust our expectations for worldwide mobile phone sales forecast to total 1.82 billion units this year. Flagship devices brought to market in time for the holidays, and the continued price reduction of smartphones will drive consumer adoption in the second half of the year."
He added that the surge in demand came from the lower end of the market that opted for smartphones that sold for $400 or below. He said for top seller Samsung to step up its game in the mid-tier level, the Seoul-based tech giant should be more aggressive in the emerging markets and not to limit its innovation to the high-end models.