Smartphone sales continue to soar, with Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Samsung solidly in the lead. Strategy Analytics reports that the market has grown 43% over last year’s sales to an impressive 700 million units in 2012. Analyst Linda Sui observes that “large marketing budgets, extensive distribution channels and attractive product portfolios have enabled Samsung and Apple to tighten their grip on the smartphone industry.”
Samsung held 30% of the market thanks to their smash hits the Galaxy Y and 5.5-inch screened “phablet,” the Galaxy Note 2, and their shipments increased from 97.4 million to 213 million.
Apple holds the same percentage as it did last year, which is 19%, and shipments increased from 93 million to 135.8 million units. Nokia (NYSE:NOK), which topped the list in 2010, now ranks third. Sui believes that Nokia “still lacks a true hero model in its range that can be considered an Apple iPhone or Samsung S3 killer.”