It was a good second quarter for Apple's iPhone as the company maintained third place in global sales among smartphone companies, according to a new report from market research firm Gartner.
In fact, Apple had the largest gains in the smartphone market, selling more than 5.4 million iPhones in the second quarter of 2009 compared to 892,000 in the second quarter of 2008, according to Gartner. First reported by AppleInsider, the increase in sales boosted Apple's market share for the category to 13.3 percent from 2.8 percent in the same period in 2008.
Gartner cited Apple's lowering the price on the 8GB iPhone 3G and its expanding into more countries as having a "clear effect on sales volumes." To put the iPhone numbers in perspective, Apple sold more iPhones during the launch weekend in June for the iPhone 3GS than it sold for the entire second quarter of 2008. (Apple released the iPhone 3G in the third quarter of last year.)
The top company in the market is Nokia, which sold 18.4 million devices for a 45 percent market share. That share is down, however, from a 47.4 percent share in the second quarter of 2008. Research In Motion, maker of the BlackBerry, sold 7.6 million devices, finishing out the quarter with 18.7 percent of the market, up from a 17.3 percent share during the same period last year.
Worldwide, mobile phone sales totaled 268.1 million for the second quarter, down 6.1 percent over the same period last year. However, the smartphone category increased 27 percent year over year, with 40 million devices sold.
It appears that Apple's good fortunes will continue. Roberta Cozza, principal analyst at Gartner, said that since the iPhone was released late in the quarter, "its full potential will only start to show in the sales figures in the second half of 2009."