iPhone owns top 3 sales spots in hottest smartphone quarter in history

iPhone owns top 3 sales spots in hottest smartphone quarter in history

Not only did more smartphones sell this quarter than ever before, but Apple was responsible for all three of top sellers -- iPhone 4S, iPhone 4, and iPhone 3GS

IDC has released a new report showing overall smartphone shipments grew a staggering 54.7 percent in the fourth quarter of 2011 thanks to overwhelming demand for the iPhone 4S. Rising popularity has helped push the iPhone 4S to become the number one selling smartphone in the world. Not only did Apple absolutely own the top selling spot, but they owned the top 3 spots as well. That's right, second only to the iPhone 4S in popularity was the iPhone 4, followed up by the iPhone 3GS according to NPD Group.

iPhone 4S now the number one handset as smartphone sales hit all-time high

Apple climbed back into the market leadership position with the launch of its iPhone 4S worldwide, and in the process it reached a new shipment volume record for itself and for the entire industry for a single quarter. Although the iPhone 4S disappointed some detractors by lacking 4G LTE connectivity or a different size screen, demand was high for the device. In addition, the combination of holiday seasonality, the delay in product launch from 3Q to 4Q, and the addition of multiple mobile operators helped drive volumes higher.

This comes after some voiced concern over setting expectations too high for the iPhone 4S, and many worried whether it was a significant enough upgrade to attract customers in large numbers. A better 8MP camera with a faster Apple A5 chip, a more reliable antenna, and Siri seem to have been more than enough to drive sales.

Something to watch for as well -- Vendors shipped a total of 157.8 million smartphones worldwide last quarter and one out of every 3 mobile phones shipped was a smartphone. This shows a continuation of the trend that should, in short order, lead to the day when all phones are smartphones.

How many iPhones will Apple be able to sell then?

Source: IDC, Fortune, NPD

Andrew Wray

Andrew Wray is a Salt Lake City, Utah based writer who focuses on news, how-tos, and jailbreak. Andrew also enjoys running, spending time with his daughter, and jamming out on his guitar. He works in a management position for Unisys Technical Services, a subsidiary of Unisys Corporation.

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Reader comments

iPhone owns top 3 sales spots in hottest smartphone quarter in history

10 Comments

Hey Imore I've seen this story on CNN foxnews and bbc all today but no story ??
On Monday, headlines once again directed the global spotlight to Foxconn, Apple's manufacturing partner, in response to an eye-opening new CNN report that depicts iDevice factory workers in less than favorable or even safe working conditions.

So move their contracts out of China? It's not like they don't have the grossly high profit margins to be able to move their contracts to places that treat their workers better.

And Dell, HP, Samsung, LG, HTC, Asus, Acer, Toshiba, Motorola....... They are all leading the charge for improvements, right? If you are following this story, as you say, you'll notice the manager admits that Apple is doing more about this than anybody else (link: http://www.cultofmac.com/144430/apples-factories-are-sweatshops-but-they...) They are not great, and could stand to be better, but don't single out Apple. They are trying to improve things, and I doubt China is being very helpful.

i was one that help that figure. i went from a droid incredible to 4s because i was let down by the galaxy nexus. i wasnt too happy with hardware, why the hell they would put the headphone jack at the bottom and the camera was a let down. And i promised myself no skinned android, i wanted a pure o.s., be it android or ios. i miss alot of stuff from android but i am happy with my purchase. my 2cents

I own an iPhone 4 and when I am playing music, I put my phone in my pocket. When I pull it back out, first thing I have to do is turn the phone around so that the text is not upside down. So a bottom earphone jack makes sense to me.
Apart from that, Samsung grew 275% as compared to 128% for Apple?? This does not look good to me. I hope Q1 2012 keeps Apple in the lead.

A record quarter in all aspects in the history of all companies is not good? Apple actually makes money on those phones, too, so that tells me they are viable and will be around a lot longer with the current business model, which gives me more incentive to support them, since they will in turn be there to support me. Just because Apple already had a strong stance in this game and Samsung didn't doesn't mean Apple is doomed. Remember when HTC was making those kinds of gains too? Yeah, how's that turning out?

I am an Apple supporter, that is for sure. No doubt Apple had a record quarter, so did the number 2. But just looking at the results in the post, it's visible that Samsung is definitely closing in, and fast.
Sure Apple makes money of their handsets, but so do others. I am not sure about your HTC claim, but Samsung must be doing something right to keep selling at the rate they are. I want Apple to lead, but I must say, competition is good!

This is neat but where is the list of the top phone models? What were the number 4 and 5 top sellers? Also, is this for the US only?