, NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 28 – The smartphone market in the region is set to grow by more than 100 percent in the next one year, according to a key industry player.
Samsung Electronics East Africa Business Leader Mr Robert Ngeru said on Friday that smartphones had gained acceptance in the local market, especially following the recent launch of the Samsung Galaxy SII and 10.1 tablet, which are set to close the year as the best selling smartphone.
“Thanks to our growing customer base and support from local mobile operators in East Africa, we are proud to be making a modest but critical contribution to the overall Samsung Smart Phone business growth,” Ngeru said.
According to the latest research from Strategy Analytics, global smartphone shipments grew 44 percent annually to reach a record 117 million units in the third quarter of 2011.
Samsung overtook Apple to claim top spot as the world’s number one smartphone vendor.
Alex Spektor, Senior Analyst at Strategy Analytics, said; “Samsung shipped 28 million smartphones and overtook Apple to become the world’s largest smartphone vendor by volume with 24 percent market share.”
Samsung’s rise has been driven by a blend of elegant hardware designs, popular Android services, memorable sub-brands and extensive global distribution.
Samsung has demonstrated that it is possible, at least in the short term, to differentiate and grow by using the Android ecosystem.
Neil Mawston, Director at Strategy Analytics, added: “After just one quarter in the top spot, Apple slipped behind Samsung to second position and captured 15 percent share.”
Apple’s global smartphone growth rate slowed to just 21 percent annually in Q3 2011, its lowest level for two years.
“We believe Apple’s growth during the third quarter was affected by consumers and operators awaiting the launch of the new iPhone 4S in the fourth quarter, volatile economic conditions in several key countries, and tougher competition from Samsung’s popular Galaxy S2 model.”
Tom Kang, Director at Strategy Analytics, added; “Nokia reached 14 percent global smartphone share in Q3 2011, more than halving from 33 percent in Q3 2010. The transition from Symbian to Microsoft as Nokia’s main smartphone platform has clearly been a very challenging process this year.”
The recent launch of the new Microsoft Lumia portfolio has helped to raise Nokia’s profile, and Nokia will be hoping the partnership with Microsoft can drive at least an L-shaped recovery in its global smartphone market share over the next few months.