Samsung Electronics Co. has surpassed arch rival Apple Inc. to become the world's largest smartphone seller in the third quarter this year, a new study released by Strategy Analytics shows.
While Samsung sold a total of 27.8 million smartphones in July-September quarter, Apple shipped just 17 million smartphones.
Nokia came in third with sales totaling to 16.8 million units.
Samsung gains; Apple, Nokia lose
Though Samsung is relatively new to the smartphone market, it has managed to outflank Nokia and Apple.
While the South Korean tech giant's share in the smartphone market skyrocketed in third quarter to 23.8 percent from 9.3 percent a year earlier, it fell for other two companies.
Apple lost 2.8 percent to 14.6 percent, and Nokia's share reduced to 14.4 percent from 32.7 percent in the same period last year.
Apple's disappointing sale's figures can be attributed iPhone 4S rumors, which kept consumers from buying 16-month-old iPhone 4 during this period. -- Neil Mawston, director at Strategy Analytics
According to Strategy Analytics, “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."
Analyzing Apple's fall
Apple's disappointing sale's figures can be attributed iPhone 4S rumors, which kept consumers from buying 16-month-old iPhone 4 during this period, said Neil Mawston, Director at Strategy Analytics.
Also, “volatile economic conditions in several key countries, and tougher competition from Samsung's popular Galaxy S2 model,” adversely affected Apple's sales, added Mawston.
Apple recently announced its fourth quarter results.For the first time in years, its earnings have missed analysts' expectations.
Apple-Samsung legal battle
Samsung has dethroned Apple at a time when the two technology giants are embroiled in legal battle over violations of patents.
It began in April when Apple filed a suit against Samsung in the United States, openly accusing tech giant of blatantly copying the designs of its iPhone and iPad
Even Samsung has accused Apple of violating patents related to data transmission, and transmitting and receiving data.
The two companies are engaged in more than 20 lawsuits in 10 countries.
So far Apple has scored victories in some of these patent cases, but it remains to be seen how this legal dispute finally gets resolved.