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Samsung surpasses Apple in ANZ mobile market: IDC

Smartphones make up 65 per cent of the Australian mobile phone market, with Android's 49 per cent market share taking over Apple's iOS

Fresh on the heels of its tablet court case, Samsung has taken first place from Apple in the Australia and New Zealand (ANZ) mobile phone market in Q3, according to IDC's ANZ Quarterly Mobile Devices Tracker.

Smartphones now make up 65 per cent of the Australian mobile phone market, with Android's 49 per cent market share taking over Apple's iOS. The iOS, now in second place, holds 36 per cent unit share as the market eased in preparation for the iPhone 4S launch in October 2011.

However, the Australian mobile phone market dipped by 17 per cent quarter-on-quarter in shipments across both smartphones and feature phones.

IDC ANZ market analyst, Yee-Kuan Lau, said in a statement that collective efforts to expand brand presence from all Android manufacturers would drive demand, which in turn will help Android grow to at least 40 per cent market share over the next three years.

"Samsung has climbed to the number one position as a result of a strong push for its Galaxy S II," she said. "HTC, being the number two Android vendor in Australia, continues to grow its market presence with its product portfolio expansion in the second half of 2011."

Turning to New Zealand, the analyst firm found that the feature phone and smartphone markets recorded a 55 per cent quarter-on-quarter growth.

The smartphone market holds 43 per cent of the total Q3 NZ mobile phone market, with Samsung overtaking Apple's number one spot with a share of 28.5 per cent of the smartphone market. Huawei, in second place, holds 20 per cent of the smartphone market followed by Apple with close to 13 per cent unit share.

"While Apple's iPhone shipments slowed down in preparation for its new iPhone 4S launch in New Zealand, Samsung led the smartphone market for the first time with some of its flagship models such as Galaxy S II and Galaxy 5 performing very well," Lau said.

"Huawei continues to expand its local market presence and contributed to the growth in sub-US$200 smartphones with its U8180 Ideos X1 model sold via Telecom NZ," she said.

According to Lau, there was a gradual shift in consumer demand to low-cost Android smartphones from feature phones across ANZ, as more low-cost smartphones are becoming available in the market. "In Australia, the shift in demand from feature phones has helped boost sales in the sub-US$150 segment with low-cost Android smartphones such as Huawei U8180 Ideos X1, especially when 90 per cent of feature phones were priced below US$150," she said.

IDC expects Android to win "by a hair" in the Australian smartphone battle while it is expected to widen the gap and maintain the lead in the smartphones market in New Zealand. In addition, approximately 9.5 million smartphones will be shipped to ANZ channels such as retailers by the end of 2011.

Follow Hamish Barwick on Twitter: @HamishBarwick

Follow Computerworld Australia on Twitter: @ComputerworldAU

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