Did the Samsung Galaxy S3 really outsell Apple's iPhone 4S in Q3 2012?

Did the Samsung Galaxy S3 really outsell Apple's iPhone 4S in Q3 2012?

Did the Samsung Galaxy S3 really outsell Apple's iPhone 4S in Q3 2012? A bunch of technology blogs linked to a press release that claimed it did, so it must be true, right? The press release was put out by the impressively named Strategy Analytics and headlined Samsung Galaxy S3 Becomes World's Best-Selling Smartphone Model in Q3 2012, so they can no doubt back up that claim, right? Well, wait, what did the lede say?

According to the latest research from Strategy Analytics, Samsung’s Galaxy S3 overtook Apple’s iPhone 4S to become the world’s best-selling smartphone model for the first time ever in the third quarter of 2012. A large touchscreen, extensive distribution and generous operator subsidies have propelled the Galaxy S3 to the top spot.

And what was senior analyst from Strategy Analytics, Neil Shah, quoted as saying?

Samsung’s Galaxy S3 smartphone model shipped 18.0 million units worldwide during the third quarter of 2012. The Galaxy S3 captured an impressive 11 percent share of all smartphones shipped globally and it has become the world’s best-selling smartphone model for the first time ever. A large touchscreen design, extensive distribution across dozens of countries, and generous operator subsidies have been among the main causes of the Galaxy S3’s success. Apple shipped an estimated 16.2 million iPhone 4S units worldwide for second place, as consumers temporarily held off purchases in anticipation of a widely expected iPhone 5 upgrade at the end of the quarter.

Hang on, the quote doesn't match the headline and lede there, does it? Why use "selling" in the headline and lede, and "shipping" in the quote? Which is it? Why use "selling" at all if they're talking about "shipping", or vice versa? What does "selling" mean? What does "shipping" mean? Are they counting only devices actually sold to customers or devices stuffed into channels, sitting on shelves, or dumped into return bins?

How did they get numbers for the Galaxy S3 when Samsung doesn't disclose device-specific sales numbers in their quarterly financials? Did they take Samsung's recent press release, which claimed 30-million sold from May to October, divide by 5 and multiply by 3 to get 18? Did they assume no change in sales acceleration occurred at all during that period?

How did they get numbers for the iPhone 4S when Apple, who does disclose iPhone sales numbers, doesn't break them down by model? Did they take Apple's 26.9 million July to September iPhone sales number, shift it a month forward, and... um... ah...?

Does it matter that the Galaxy S3 is actually two nearly identical looking, but internally different phones that use completely different processor architectures -- the Samsung Exynos 4 Quad sold internationally, and the Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 sold in North America and Japan -- and are simply sold under the same brand name?

The iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S are also nearly identical looking phones that have different processor architectures, should they be considered together for this report? Is an "S" more of a differentiator than an "International" or "North American"?

Why even put out a press release on a metrics report that so conflates and confounds the very metrics it purports to deliver that the headline and lede can't even be supported by the contents? Why re-blog that press release without questioning why the headline and lede don't match the content of the release?

And if the Galaxy S3 really did outsell the iPhone 4S in Q3, 2012, why not give Samsung, Apple, investors, and consumers something that answers more questions than it raises?

Rene Ritchie

Editor-in-Chief of iMore, co-host of Iterate, Debug, Review, The TV Show, Vector, ZEN & TECH, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

More Posts

 

-
loading...
-
loading...
-
loading...
-
loading...

← Previously

iMore Editors' Choice for November 10, 2012

Next up →

Apple paying Swiss Rail $21 million to use their clock design on the iPad

There are 106 comments. Add yours.

cableguy619 says:

Shouldn't all iPhones be considered as top seller so 4 and 5 for comparison on sales. Not a fair comparison knowing the 5 was coming most people held off from buying since a new one was coming.

okli says:

its just another one out the flood of AAPL negative headlines in last two months fabricated by Hedge Funds... important is just the negative Headline...because they need a panic sell reaction...

It's called sell-in (the channel) and sell-through (to the end customer)
Apple reports sales (the customer here is the channel) and they report inventory...So you have an exact number of how many units apple actually sold to end customers.... Apple is the only company providing these exact numbers quarter by quarter...Someskunk and others...don't, they only tout smoke and mirrors...and they never tell us how many units they sold. Why is that?...
because so they could after launching a new model pull all the old unsold models back very quietly...but they'll still remain in all the stats as sold, because they never report inventory!!!.... that's WHY... there are NO official real numbers from any Androdevises out there ... and there will NEVER be !!!...
So the research firms by the likes of Gartner, IDC and others...can put any fantasy numbers they want in to the wild.... depends who is paying for the research...because those numbers are impossible to prove... Those estimates are BS...
The analytic figures are a laugh however ... as they are infamous for reporting that Samsung shipped 2.5 million galaxy tabs in Q2 2012 but than a court document reveals that Samsung actually only sold 37,000 in the same time frame.
This Analytics firms have been constantly wrong with their numbers...Year after Year !!!
and still ... everyone reports on their numbers as if they were a fact.

sidn3y says:

Haha. Why the heck are you getting so salty over this?

"The iPhone cannot possibly have been beaten! IT'S IMPOSSIBLE!"

GeniusUnleashed says:

You been drinking Rene?

"The Galaxy S3 captured an impressive 11 percent share of all smartphones shipped globally and it has become the world’s best-selling smartphone model for the first time ever."

It says "best-selling" in the quote AS WELL as "shipped."

And seriously, relax man, who cares.

GeniusUnleashed says:

I don't think you understand what the word "unintelligible" means.

Just to clear it up for you:

unintelligible |ˌəninˈteləjəbəl|
adjective
impossible to understand: dolphin sounds are unintelligible to humans.
DERIVATIVES
unintelligibility |-ˌteləjəˈbilətē|noun,
unintelligibly |-blē|adverb

raremage says:

His point is, there's a significant difference between shipped and sell through, as well as a potentially skewed playing field with regard to totaling units sold. Both points make sense.

If you don't care, why read the article?

andsoitgoes says:

Exactly.

The issue here isn't the "oh no apple didn't win my life is worthless!'

The issue is shoddy journalism to sucker in page clicks and views.

A company could ship a billion phones, but if none of them sell it means nothing at all. I used to run a bookstore that had $50k in inventory, but the inventory turn in the industry is about 2%. Obviously Samsung isn't a bookstore and sells crazy amounts, but just saying you shipped more than someone else isn't close to claiming you sold more.

It's simply incorrect, and there's zero proof that Samsung outsold Apple, let alone anyone else. Go search for samsung and look at the news hits that come up. Everyone is focusing on the dramatic headline : "Samsung outsells the iPhone" when, in fact, it's a completely false statement. Maybe it's true, but who knows. No one is saying how much was sold. Just how much was shipped.

Rene Ritchie says:

It's certainly possible that, during the transition from iPhone 4S to iPhone 5, the Galaxy S3 outsold the iPhone 4S.

I just can't tell if that's the case based on that press release. Which is really bad, and absolutely worth discussing, in my opinion.

DM52 says:

Worth discussing - yes. Unfortunately, in this article, your opinion comes across a bit over-the-top fanboy-esque, where there are much better ways to discuss and question the press release.

Please correct me if I'm wrong, but, in this case, shouldn't shipped and sold numbers roughly correlate? Obviously, this isn't always the case (N-Gage), but Samsung isn't going to drastically increase their shipments unless they have had larger sales in the previous period, or are projecting larger sales in the upcoming period (this may well have been the case, as the article states that demand for the 4S was down with the launch of the 5 coming along). The reason they don't do this is to prevent the same style of article coming out when they have overstocked retailers, and don't need to ship as many phones.

As far as processor architectures go, I don't see it necessary to differentiate the device sold in one part of the world to that sold in the other, much like we'll see with any details of the cellular iPad, which runs on different frequencies in different parts of the world. When it all comes down to it, the user experience is the same, and the device is identified as the same. The reason the 4 and 4S weren't combined in together was because they are different phones, released 18 months apart.

I do, however, agree that the overall article comes across as misleading, especially with the title not matching what's necessarily in text.

Rene Ritchie says:

iPad is the same internationally. The iPad 3 and iPad 4 have different processors, however, so should they be considered the same tablet? (Maybe they should?)

My opinion is that Samsung likely outsold Apple during that quarter, how is that "fanboy-esque". How does using a dismissive term like "fanboy-esque" not make it difficult to enjoy further conversation on a topic?

DM52 says:

Your opinion that it outsold Apple didn't come through clearly in the article, and the tone came across very much the opposite, which is where my fanboy-esque comment came from. Certainly further discussion can still be made on the topic.

It's certainly refreshing to hear that Apple may have been outsold around iMore (although it was no doubt expected, with the upcoming launch of the iPhone 5).

Regarding iPad; I was under the impression that the fourth generation cellular models would run two different versions, in order to support the full range of LTE frequencies. Is this not the case? I may have confused it with another device.

bunglebush says:

rene you are making it worse. just drop it. it's your best move..

jscotta44 says:

"Please correct me if I'm wrong, but, in this case, shouldn't shipped and sold numbers roughly correlate?" Okay, I'll correct you. They do not correlate. They might, but they certainly do not have to. Companies have often shipped far more than they actually sold in the hopes that by flooding the channel they would motivate the dealers of their products to sell more. This is known as "stuffing" the channel.

When was the last time you read on article on overstocked retailers - right - I haven't either. Oh, you might see something like that in a retail specific organ, but not in the general press.

9thWonder says:

everyone get's his point and honestly i doubt they anyone read most of it that's thinks it's not worth mentioning.

godofwar33 says:

Also it clearly makes sense because all the fanboys out there were waiting for the iPhone 5.

tomhoward says:

For once I agree with the general gist of Rene's article, there should be some way of seeing how the numbers were derived. I don't however buy the fact there are two models so its two phones, as the iPhone 5 has 3 models so are we counting that as three phones? Either way, a little bit fanboy but still a valid point.

rick9814911 says:

You really have gotten out of hand Rene. I've been visiting this site for a couple years now. Your posts have gotten increasingly ridiculous. Even the slightest little criticism towards Apple sends you into a fanboy rage fit that results in stupid posts like this. I visit this site less and less simply because of posts like this. I've even begun avoiding the iMore podcast simply because I don't enjoy hearing you talk anymore. On top of that I've read a lot of your posts in response to comments on your posts. Every post you make seems snark and almost as if your talking down to people. Please fix your attitude. Your really starting to ruin this site.

bunglebush says:

rich
I totally agree. rene is a snob. fanboy. that's thinks that apple has to be defended for everything they do. my gosh it's not the early 90's renee apple is doing just fine now. they do not have to be defended anymore... and sure rene complains about little things apple does. but only just a little not enough to notice and actually only for a fleeting moment. unlike his rolling his eyes at everything microsoft tries to do and never given them any chance to do anything right!
tone it down rene....lol you are making a fool of yourself... you need to report the news and let the fact be the truth...

agentmobile says:

Then why don't both of you go to cult of Mac or android authority and u can witness some REAL fanboy BS. Rene is an editor and a decent one I'd say. I like his posts , and so do u. That's why you still read them every day. Your titled to your opinion tho, just like Rene is entitled to his. Looks like u felt like stirring the pot up. But seriously - go to some other android sites and please witness the intense apple hating fanboyism that goes on its funny but it's their right to have opinions as well. After all this is an APPLE fan site ...

bunglebush says:

well i hate to tell you but dispite it's name "cultofmac" at least the podcast is less fanboy than anyone apple based podcast I've listened to.. it's very honest and when they don't like something or think it's getting more praise than it deserves they say so... You if you dont already should listen to the cultcast and then judge on how fanboy they are..

xabhax says:

Might be a leap of faith to assume that the Galaxy S3 outsold the iphone, but a fair one. Considering there market share has dropped for ipads something like 30%, Just live with it Steve Jobs is dead, he was apple. Without him they are on a downword spiral. Maybe if they would innovate more like they used to, but they dont.

bobbob1016 says:

Yeah, I'm really going to find another site for news, as this is not news. This is 100% spin.

andsoitgoes says:

The fact that the entire press, from no name sites to serious journalism websites, are posting completely false information, spun to make it an article people might click through is.

Sure Rene likes Apple, and is partial to it. The android blogs often lean that way too. But Rene here is trying to point out that the news entirely falsified serious information, rendering their claims inaccurate.

I guess everyone should just sit back and accept news that's wrong, especially when it's this highly publicized?

Chris Parsons says:

If you think this is "spin", I'm curious to hear what you think about the other sites that ran the story as fact without questioning it.

9thWonder says:

I'd guess they think they are equally inaccurate. I don't think most people are reacting to the accuracy of the article but rather the fact that it has become a common occurence to take great offense to the slightest negative "news", comment, report, study about Apple or Apple product. And the slight manifests itself in some column, like "But apple has the most profit share," Or "but apple sold more", etc. To a lot of people, the need to constantly pop up with columns rebutting the the slightest misstatement simply comes off like childish, fanboy whining that you get on forums. I can tell you the precentral forums where full of that as Palm spent years dieing a slow death. Moderators got out of hand, deleting posts, banning people that displayed any contrary opinion. It became ridiculous. Regardless i don't think it's the accuracy, of course shipped doesn't equal sales. That's basic. The internet is full of inaccurate statements. Rene just gets bent out of shape easily. And you know now they'll spend 20 minutes in a podcast rehashing this.

iDavey says:

Wait, wait...

Did anyone catch this?
Because the S3 uses a different tech, its a different phone?

So that means every CDMA and GSM iPhone should be counted as two different phones?

Are you aware of how dumb that sounds?

Rene Ritchie says:

Before I wrote that I checked into it. The folks at Android Central said they're pretty much the same phone in name only (we had extensive discussions when making the spec charts on which phone we should actually use). I have huge respect for the folks at Android Central and thing they know quite a lot about Android phones. Still, I double checked with Wikipedia which said:

The S III comes in two distinct variations that differ primarily in the internal hardware. The international S III version has Samsung's Exynos 4 Quad system on a chip (SoC) containing a 1.4 GHz quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 central processing unit (CPU) and an ARM Mali-400 MP graphics processing unit (GPU).[66] According to Samsung, the Exynos 4 Quad doubles the performance of the Exynos 4 Dual used on the S II, while using 20 percent less power.[67] Samsung had also released several 4G LTE versions—4G facilitates higher-speed mobile connection compared to 3G—in selected countries to exploit the corresponding communications infrastructures that exist in those markets.[68] Most of these versions use Qualcomm's Snapdragon S4 SoC featuring a dual-core 1.5 GHz Krait CPU and an Adreno 225 GPU.[69] The South Korean and Australia versions are a hybrid of the international and 4G-capable versions.[70]

The iPhone 4S and iPhone 4, like the 2 Galaxy S3 models, have the same casing but different processors. I'm just asking what draws the line, other than product naming?

faithnomor says:

It is interesting that the international versions have slightly different internals, maybe a little more power was needed to support the different networks.

iDavey says:

If I'm remembering right though, the carriers in the US have final say in final design/hardware that is used (correct me if I'm wrong). So wouldn't that fall on the carriers, not Samsung. In Samsung book, the S3 is am S3 regardless what. And it strikes me as odd that people always say OEM should narrow down their line. They do that and that's a mark against them?

Overall, I do agree Rene, blogs shouldn't compare shipped to sold. I don't like that either. But trying to nitpick down to processors and using that as a disqualification is reaching. Let's just leave it at shipped ≠ sold and that says enough. The iPhone still wins. Galactic peace is preserved.

iDavey says:

And if it seems I was calling you dumb, I was not. I was just saying the statement was. Simply because Samsung only used different processors for most likely cost reasons (I can see carriers not wanting to pay extra for a spec bump on paper to them). So its not an upgrade, its not a different phone. Its the same phone modified for the buyer. I could see if they went S2 to S3 and left them as the same device, but this is simply a region difference it seems.

Rene Ritchie says:

I can see that, but is the iPad 4 really any more different from the iPad 3 than the two Galaxy S3's are from each other? Apple just chose to name them differently.

iDavey says:

They are not. Honestly, I don't get why Apple chose to even mark the New New iPad as a new generation. I feel as if its simply a spec bump. But I guess it really boils down to what the OEM sees it as.

Overall, as long as my device works, I'm happy. I honestly prefer my phone to not be mainstream. Weird as that sounds.

Rene Ritchie says:

That's not weird at all. I have that impulse as well. I just got lazy as I got older and can't be bothered to tweak stuff anymore.

Apple products generally annoy me the least these days, but that can change. (I used to be all-in on Microsoft, including WinMo).

iDavey says:

I think all of us went through that phase, lol.

I'm hitting that now. I love Apple for my tablet and computer. My phone I love Android, but I want the Apple feel. That's why I've stuck to Nexus. Its the closest in Apple like manner (timely updates, no carrier interference, no bloat) while not seeing many people with it.

bunglebush says:

recycle bin? lol everyone I talk to that has the gs3 says they love it. and i kinda wish i had a big screen like that sometimes.. lol recycle bin indeed!

Thorasgar says:

Well Rene, you are getting quite a ribbing here. Take it in stride. I get your point, but when has there EVER been a truelly accurate press release in the history of capitalism. The release was clearly hype and most people can see that, with the possible exception of Faux News zombies. Even the almighty Apple is prone to hype.

I really don't care if the iPhone is the Brest selling phone or the fifth best selling. I like my phone.

CrackberryMike says:

Who cares??? I come here for info relating to the USAGE of my Apple products, relating to hardware, apps, jailbreaking, etc... Lately we have been subjected to sniping over reported user demographics, validity of the competitor's ads, reported sales numbers, and blase product comparisons which highlight nothing outside of the obvious. Please stop...

Rene Ritchie says:

I'd like to thank those who took a moment to actually read the article and engage in the discussion. Media literacy and the standards of the information we get fed are important issues, and we're going to keep that discussion going. If someone is going to give us metrics, we deserve the best metrics possible.

To those offering only personal attacks and insults, chill out. No one is attacking you or your phone or platform of choice. No one is defaming your mother or saying the bits and atoms in your pockets are worse or somehow less than the bits and atoms in someone else's pockets.

If the Galaxy S3 really OUT SOLD the iPhone 4S in Q3, great! Good for Samsung, good for competition, good for Apple, and good for us.

I just want to know that. I don't want any douche "selling" in the headdy and lede, and "shipping" in the body.

Like I said in the article, thats what we deserve.

If it's more important to you that someone simply writes the words than it be true, if it makes you feel better about yourselves to insult rather than discuss, than that's fine. But you're in the wrong place.

If you're commenting here, bring your A game. If you can't or won't, that has nothing to do with me. That's on you.

(Note: Disagree with me all you like, but be polite. If you're rude, your comment will get spammed and you probably won't be able to comment on posts in the future. That's your choice, but I'll miss hearing what you have to say.)

faithnomor says:

Writers at iMore often preach that competition inspires innovation. Here is competition. The S3 is competing with the iPhone and it is a fact. Yet this competition is not only not even acknowledged, but shot down. Let's accept the fact that the S3 is a good device, and is competing with the iPhone. Hopefully this will inspire engineers on both sides to make even more innovative products.
The numbers should be questioned though if neither company releases them.
And besides, who said everyone has to have an iPhone? It's still a great phone regardless of whether or not it's the best selling.

Rene Ritchie says:

Where was it shot down?

What is factually incorrect in what I wrote? I asked questions, isn't that what we should all be doing?

faithnomor says:

I'm not disagreeing with the asking of questions, I specifically said that "the numbers should be questioned if neither company releases them". I totally agree with that and I was never calling your article incorrect nor was I personally attacking you. What I was referring to and I think what a lot of people are getting all upset about is the emotional component to the article, which diverts most of a reader's attention from the actual questions you were raising. For example, this "rage" others are speaking of (though not the word I would use) is what they focus on and not the questions you raise. As I said I wouldn't use rage, but due to word choice this article does express a lot emotion which leads most people (including myself) to come to a conclusion about you being very upset about this. Again, not an attack on you, just an analysis of your article.

MickeyBlue-Eyes says:

Typical android sheep grabbing at straws. They're just like Republicans. Lie until it becomes the truth. Keep up the good work Rene. It's nice having a site to combat the BS android sheep Fox News type sites.
Pathetic Samsung android sheep. Buy American!

anonymousbin says:

Actually it's more like Android folks are like Democrats. They think their "victory" was bigger than it really was.

okli says:

Actually... andro-freax are like nationalists...DUDE... starting the WAR for their's pathetic ideology against everyone ... no one is interested to fight U ... DUDES ... so crawl back to Ur anonymous green garbage bin and enjoy the sweet waste there... Samy the Skunk.... as all Koreans can only lay, cheat and eat dogs... everyone buying their's products is DOG KILLER !!!

pa7tip says:

Seriously? You buy apple products and you're going to tell people to buy American? You do realize your phone was made in China with foreign parts (some by Samsung) iphones are great, so are androids, so are blackberries. Who gives a shit? Buy the phone you like and move along.

yurasis says:

You mean "Buy Chinese", right?

okli says:

every American product is produced in China ... now days.... DUDE

agentmobile says:

Oh really? I'm a republican so I lie like you say? And you dems/liberals put the biggest liars this country has ever seen BACK into office. Health care reform will impose 20 new taxes , I hope you have a damn good job because get ready to get taxed like Canadians. They have free healthcare but where do they go when they need a heart transplant? America. Cause free healthcare is BS. Maine has had "Obamacare" for 15 yrs now and the state govt is broke, plus no one there has less than a $10k deductible because its so expensive otherwise, BECAUSE its guaranteed issue health insurance meaning everyone can be insured regardless of risk level so u have diabetes and two strokes? Congrats! U get thrown into the same pool as completely healthy people and we all get to pay for you and others like you. There was a better way to do this but Obama seems to think that health insurance is a RIGHT to every human not a privilege like it always had been. He's trying to bankrupt the private sector and it won't happen because the healthcare industry will innovate. People who voted for Obama: college kids because he said he"ll take away their debt....single mothers because he said he will increase welfare......union workers because he said he will increase benefits and funding.....and Latino/black/foreign people because he said he's gonna open the flood gates and let everyone into our country no more immigration process. I could seriously go on all day about how much of a bad president Barack Obama is but it will take forever to type. Get your facts straight before u post some dumb s*** like this , everyone who voted for Obama thinks the are getting something in return. Democrat- increase govt .....Republican- minimize govt. Which do u want? Oh , u want the govt to control everything and even wipe your a** huh?

blyths says:

BTW Rene, what's up with all the journalese?
Lede? Presser? You are/should be writing for the tech geeks, not the journalism geeks :)

And on the topic of what makes it the same phone? The way it is marketed and sold. Probably less than 3% of the people buying the GS III would know or care which processor is inside.

MickeyBlue-Eyes says:

It's disgusting all of you android sheep who want so badly to see a Korean company beat an American company. Typical android/Republican morons. Yet another reason I love Apple. They are AMERICAN!!

yurasis says:

Yep, an American company ... selling phones made in China. Maybe you should be disgusted with Apple taking jobs from Americans and giving them to Chinese teenagers.

Got it.

okli says:

every American or Korean company... is selling staff made in China... thats just the way it is now days... but at least Apple still employs thousands of Americans... so U would prefer to take all those jobs from Americans and give them to Korean dog eaters... DUDE ???

xabhax says:

Sheep? Do people who buy android phones camp outside to buy a phone that is dated before it was released?

okli says:

Androfreax don't need to ... Androstaff is thrown on them in a flood of models... which they can enjoy for a day or so ... til the newest greatest Androdevice drops... which they have to buy if they want to have the newest software.... DUDE... that's what make APPLE stuff so special...

kralnor says:

Lawl. Apart from the handful of millionaires and billionaires who work in California, apple is just about as american as Samsung.

The sad thing is you guys think Rene is defending apple here. He's just pointing out that the report which grabs headlines isn't clear. Did they ship more or did they sell more? Either way it would be interesting to know

You guys are acting like the sky is falling if something might have outsold the iPhone.

Ath0 says:

I agree, the media is getting worse by the day at publishing all kinds of unfounded BS and the public swallows it all without question. Tech "news" in particular is one of the worse hit by marketing propaganda.

For example days ago TechCrunch revealed they had been publishing anything coming from a certain PR company as news for a measly $750 a pop. I can only imagine other websites and "analytics" companies sell themselves even cheaper.

These shipped/sold thing is just the tip of the iceberg. Anyone who takes the time to verify what others call "news" and question them gets a big thumbs up from me.

Rene, did you contact Strategy Analytics to understand their methodology? It would be interesting to know their response (although I suspect they won't reply)

xabhax says:

Yes an american company, which products are made in china solely of foreign parts. Who probably pays next to no tax.

Ath0 says:

That's more bullshit, many components on the iPhone are made in the US, for example the Gorilla Glass, possibly the A6 processor and the Qualcomm baseband.

Apple also paid over 13 billion in US tax alone last year, see their financial statement:
http://files.shareholder.com/downloads/AAPL/2031967899x0xS1193125%2D12%2...

pa7tip says:

So its been confirmed the iphone uses American glass. Still doesn't justify saying buying apple is buying American. That was just a stupid thing to say, period.

xabhax says:

Well the A6 is made by a foriegn company (Samsung) and qualcomm uses a taiwanese company for alot of there chips. And gorilla glass is made in Kentucky, taiwan and japan. More than likely most of the gorilla glass comes from taiwan and japan to save on shipping cost. Ill give you the taxs though

Ath0 says:

and Samsung makes Apple's processors at their Austin, Texas plant:

"Exclusive: Made in Texas: Apple's A5 iPhone chip"
http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/12/16/us-apple-samsung-idUSTRE7BF0D4...

As for Gorilla Glass I think you'll agree Kentuck is in the US.
In fact it was thanks to Apple's massive order that they saved it from closing and people losing their jobs.

"Around the time [Steve] Jobs called, the Corning plant in Harrodsburg [Kentucky] was struggling to remain open, suffering the effects of the great recession. Another Corning employee adds, “Late 2008 and into 2009, the world experienced a real crisis. So we were extremely fortunate at that time to have a new business, Gorilla, that was growing and could really help this plant stay viable.”
http://www.webpronews.com/iphone-inadvertently-saves-kentucky-factory-20...

But whatever troll, keep ignoring facts and buying stuff 100% made by Korean companies.

FlipObamney says:

"Exclusive: Made in Texas: Apple's A5 iPhone chip"

The chip may be made in America, but it's not Apple making the chip. It's that Korean company that you seem to hate.

Don't tell people to keep ignoring facts when you yourself are suffering from the same problem.

kralnor says:

Incorrect about everything but the taxes. Gorilla glass might have been invented here, but its made all over the world. The chip is ... Samsung. Bwahaha. Qualcomm, yeah another company that actually makes everything overseas.

Not faulting apple for that, its just stupid to act like buying their products is doing the patriotic thing. Its not like buying a Ford over a Honda. Except the Honda actually employs more Americans than apple.

anon3099209 says:

If the glass is American on an iPhone than the glass is just as American on Samsung products, as they also use Corning's Gorilla Glass.

As for taxes... Apple may have paid over 13B but that's nothing compared to what an American company should pay if they earn what Apple earns. Apple's HQ may officially be in Cali, but by setting up offices and subsidiaries in Nevada, Ireland, the Netherlands, Luxembourg and the British Virgin Islands they get around the American tax rate. Apple pioneered the "Double Irish With a Dutch Sandwich" strategy designed to get around the tax code. This way, their rate ends up being about 2.2%. By comparison, WalMart pays around 24%.

saynt j says:

Hmmmm.... I can't find my comment... And I was 1st

psychotron says:

Regardless of the validity of your argument the tone still makes it come off sounding like sour grapes. Most likely better to have dismissed it altogether rather than to waste 600 words addressing it and therefore giving it more traction than it already had to begin with. Just an observation.

Rene Ritchie says:

More and more we've come to accept less and less.

If SA wants to tell me Galaxy S3 sold more than iPhone 4S, tell me that. Give me numbers. Source the data. We deserve better.

That you think they shouldn't be called on stunts like that is the reason they should be called on stunts like that.

psychotron says:

Rene, I'm not saying that news outlets and journalists shouldn't be called out on questionable reporting as an absolute. All I was trying to point out is that by posting something like this it just tends to give it higher visibility than it deserves. I often listen to podcasts on which you feature as host or guest and have heard you state (possibly more than once) that iMore doesn't like to lend credibility to rumors and iOS news that smacks of hyperbole for this very reason, and I very much respect that. It generally makes me view iMore with a modicum of credibility that many other iOS blogs sometimes seem to lack, so articles like this just appear to be outside that ethic which I've come to expect. That being said, I quite enjoy and will certainly continue to read this site. I also really appreciate the fact that you do actually take the time to read feedback and reply with your own thoughts and opinions.

Germian says:

I think it's more a matter of generations.

Yes, the Samsung Galaxy S3 comes in different variants, but the iPhone back then didn't come as a "iPhone 4S CDMA" and "iPhone 4S GSM". When Verizon came out with the CDMA version of the iPhone, it was still considered a 4 (or was it the 4S? Can't remember). And to be honest, I'm very sure that nearly nobody in the US knows that there is another variant of the same phone sold in the rest of the world.

So, if you really want to count the different internals of the SGS3 as a different phone, then you should list the selling numbers of the iPhone 5 according to the three models (international, AT&T/Sprint, Verizon) that are out there, even when the only difference are the radios. Different internals are still different internals.

Or you can begin to split hair if the exchange of one or two chips already counts as a new phone or not.

Rene Ritchie says:

iPhone 4 CDMA/GSM have identical processors. So does the iPhone 4S across networks. Same procs, same platform, same phones internally.

iPad 3 and iPad 4 are almost identical except for the proc and the radio chip, and Apple calls them by different names. They both came out in 2012. Should they be considered one iPad?

harshjhaveri says:

quick question, were the iPhone 4 and the 4S or the iPad 3 and iPad 4 announced on the same day ? And if they were not announced on the same day, they are yet soo similar ? Just wondering.

Dev from tipb says:

Apple sells a lot. Samsung sells a lot. Who ekes ahead of the other for a quarter matters very little, as long as they each keep improving enough to force the other to bring their "A" game.

Rene Ritchie says:

I agree. But that report wasn't issued by Apple or Samsung.

Carioca32 says:

To be fair Rene, I think that Apple's claim that the Mac is the # 1 desktop in America in 2012 deserved the same scrutiny.

Rene Ritchie says:

Agreed. I can take companies putting their best foot forward more than I can take supposed 3rd party metrics companies putting out impenetrable, highly questionable research reports, however. (Note, I didn't try to refute Samsung's sales presser, only SA's "report".)

enots27 says:

Whatever was written does it really make a difference to you. Take a chill pill.

9thWonder says:

iMore is just a guilty of bias, inaccuracy and exaggeration as the other tech blogs. The lesson is be skeptical of all tech blogs including imore. They have different standards for journalism then traditional print media. And be skeptical of traditional print journlist because they all are out for sensationalism because that attracts eyeballs.

sams0n1te says:

Are everybody sure about this sold vs shipping argument. It used to make sense when Apple sold all phones in US from Apple retail stores. When iphone is sold in wolrdwide you can be sure that the rules are the same for every manufacturer. Apple will sell the phone to Euroopean electronics seller chain or operator (actually their wholesaller). They will not give real time information when it will be sold. Apple gets info when phone is activated which is the same as android activation. How on earth can there be difference now that most iphones are sold outside US and canada.

I would like too clarification to this and from somewher else than blog linkkinä to another. Meaning that Mgsiegler linking to John Gruber is not proof.

Edit: tried to lookup the past Apple PR letters. Seems that Apple does not point out difference in amounts after the worldwide launch. People always tell that what Apple is saying and not saying is meaningful. On the other hand I only lokero a couple and maybe I am just guessing.

JeremieJones12 says:

Whether Samsung outsold Apple is true or not it would make sense if they did. Anybody who buys Apple knew the new iPhone was coming out in Sept/Oct and was simply holding off to buy/upgrade. This really is not a story. I have a 4s and an iPad 3 that has been my laptop replacement (which I'm seeing more and more people do) but people are being way too SENSITIVE. Apple makes great stuff but Google is making a compelling alternative with the new Nexus 4, 7 and 10 lineup.

Snownation says:

Isn't the term "shipped" synonymous to "sold" these days?
And "sold" actually just means "shipped" to a warehouse as inventory.

Whenever companies tell you they sold 1 million units, it actually means they shipped their phones to Phones4U, Orange, Vodafone, CPW... etc...

Apple does it, Samsung does it.

dancing-bass says:

First: I'm more of a fan of Android then I am of Apple. For what "I" like/want/need, the Android OS fits me better then iOS. That doesn't mean there are things that iOS does better then Android. In fact there are things that I wish Android would take a lesson from iOS.

That being said, when this headline broke (and I saw it in more then one place) I couldn't help but wonder. I mean, the S3 was out well before the iPhone 5. And the only way to truely compare would be the 5 vs the S3, in quarter 1 of 2013. And compare items sold AND activated, not merely shipped. The articlein question, as was stated in the above comments, was merely for clicks and page views. And as Rene stated, the metrics stated in the article are not truly comparing things fairly... in fact they just confuse the issue.

To be fair, this should be compared on a level playing field (all metrics equal, or as close as possible). Apples to er... apples (sorry for the pun).

And let's not forget. competition is good for all of us, regardless of our favorite OS. When one excels, the competition is forced to do better -- and that means a better experience, both hardware and software, for us consumers.

anon3099209 says:

I agree that the iphone 4 and 4S are the same thing. Don't forget the iphone 5 which is just an iphone 4/4S with a larger screen. Same goes for the ipad 3 and 4. Which isn't really much different than the ipad 2. So yeah, the iphone did outsell the the GS3. But that's sad considering the iphone hasn't changed since the iphone 4.

Dark_Blu says:

How could Samsung have outsold Apple last quarter? How could something like that be possible? Well, if we keep in mind that sales on the iPhone 4S cooled due to people waiting for the iPhone 5, it doesn't really mean that much that the Galaxy S3 outsold the iPhone 4S. What will be interesting is to see what the iPhone 5 sales figures are this quarter.

anon3099209 says:

Also keep in mind the people holding off buying the 4S because they were waiting for the Galaxy S3. I know it sounds ridiculous but it happened.

AJErvin12 says:

I get it now, fight spin with spin! SMH. Rene your Apple underoos are showing. Pull your pants up!

grn4frk says:

I think comparing the two processors of the S3 to the iPhone 4/4S is not very accurate. All S3's are the same, save for the processor. The reason the US versions have a dual core processor instead of the quad like in international versions is because the quad cores were not yet optimized for LTE data, the dual core was. The iPhone4/4S and iPad 3/4 are not just a processor difference. They are introduced as totally new products. That's like comparing the GSM and CDMA as two different phones. They're the same thing. I think it's certainly possible the S3 outsold the 4S in Q3, but as stated, it was most likey people holding out for the iPhone 5 (like me). I believe they got the number of 4S's sold by subtracting the amount of iPhone 5 sales reported by Apple for the last few days of the Q3 when it was introduced.

stuntmonkey says:

"How did they get numbers for the Galaxy S3 when Samsung doesn't disclose device-specific sales numbers in their quarterly financials?"

I used to the work in the numbers game, and I wished more people would ask questions like this of the little research companies that dot the landscape. These are perfectly valid questions, and too many companies hide behind 'proprietary' methods to back up their numbers.

Nibbz says:

Doesn't matter. Samsung's newest device came out. The 4S had been around since October, people were waiting for iPhone 5, hence lower 4S sales.

Ipheuria says:

This is such a useless metric right now. This doesn't become useful unless Samsung beats Apple continually like iPhone 5, iPhone 5s, iPhone 6, etc. I do agree that it should be questioned because otherwise others will start using the same tactics and then when does it ever stop?

pappy53 says:

All I know is that Android is KILLING IT in the marketplace, and Apple sales have actually fallen.
http://www.androidcentral.com/android-claims-72-mobile-market-sales-q3-2...

Kelly mark says:

SGS3 has a fantastic feature that now you can use your SGS3 as a DSLR Viewfinder and Controller. Detail here http://www.careace.net/2012/11/21/use-your-samsung-galaxy-s-ii-or-iii-as...
Android Smartphones and DSLRs, too pieces of modern consumer technology that have made breakthroughs in each of their respective industries. Now the two can be united with the right cable and a little bit of software

NotAnIfan says:

Classic sour-grapes iFan reaction. Get used to this sort of news guys - Samsung's ability to adapt and service a broad range of markets has seen it succeed over a period of time Apple has only partially covered... all the while relying heavily on Samsung components to make a profit!! Unfortunately, Golden-boy Jobs is gone, and hopefully the company doesn't spiral so quickly that the legions of ill-informed vitriolic iFans are caught short without another bandwagon to jump onto.

Asraful kiron says:

Android is KILLING IT in the marketplace. Found some new feature here www.top7mobiles.com

Budl1te says:

Sounds like some one is angry that their precious phone's place in the world and by comparison, their own self worth has been challenged. Wow, It is just a phone, If it drops a point or two or stays on top, what difference does it make? I am not going to buy something because it is a "best Seller" I am going to buy what gives me the best features at the best price. I am also going to buy something that I control, not something that controls what I can and cannot do. Be happy with your phone. You chose it to suit your needs, not because of the corporate brand name right????