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Samsung's Galaxy S III Steals Smartphone Crown From iPhone 348

zacharye writes "The best-selling smartphone in the world is no longer an iPhone. New data released on Thursday by market research firm Strategy Analytics finds that Samsung's Galaxy S III was the world's top-selling smartphone model in the third quarter this year, displacing Apple's iPhone for the first time in years. Samsung announced earlier this week that cumulative Galaxy S III channel sales reached the 30 million unit milestone and according to Strategy Analytics, 18 million of those were shipped in Q3 2012. During the same period, Apple shipped an estimated 16.2 million iPhone 4S handsets, slipping into the No.2 spot for the quarter..." Also at Slash Cloud.
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Samsung's Galaxy S III Steals Smartphone Crown From iPhone

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:22PM (#41919377)

    That's why. :p

    • by kav2k ( 1545689 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:37PM (#41919641)

      Love the moderation on this one. Currently "Informative", but every single descriptor fits if you think about it.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:46PM (#41919781)
      Everyone is better than Apple. Apple stole every single "innovation" that they have ever laid claim to.
    • by Tangential ( 266113 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @01:15PM (#41920209) Homepage

      That's why. :p

      According to the article:
      However, the Galaxy S3’s position as the world’s best-selling smartphone model is likely to be short-lived. The Apple iPhone 5 has gotten off to a solid start already with an estimated 6.0 million units shipped globally during Q3 2012. We expect the new iPhone 5 to out-ship Samsung’s Galaxy S3 in the coming fourth quarter of 2012 and Apple should soon reclaim the title of the world’s most popular smartphone model

      So I guess at that point they won't be better.

      What would make this analysis more interesting would be to compare units sold, not just shipped.

      • by CastrTroy ( 595695 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @02:52PM (#41922017) Homepage
        Apple has the advantage that they only sell one phone and call it the iPhone. Samsung on the other hand has many Samsung Galaxy [] devices. A similar phenomenon exists for LG Optimus [] phones. So almost all of Apple's sales are concentrated on a single device. I wonder who sells more phones overall. Or more important, who makes more profit overall. I think Apple is still king on that one.
        • by mjwx ( 966435 ) on Friday November 09, 2012 @02:14AM (#41929265)

          Apple has the advantage that they only sell one phone and call it the iPhone. Samsung on the other hand has many Samsung Galaxy [] devices. A similar phenomenon exists for LG Optimus [] phones. So almost all of Apple's sales are concentrated on a single device. I wonder who sells more phones overall.

          I was waiting for it. The bad excuse that fanboys use to convince themselves this isn't happening. The different SGS 3 devices are akin to the fact Apple sells Iphones with Samsung, LG or Sharp screens, or the fact they have a 16, 32 or 64 GB SKU or do you honestly think there is no hardware difference between the Sprint/Verizon CDMA Iphones and the GSM Iphones? The SGS3 outsold the Iphone, you need to deal with it.

          Or more important, who makes more profit overall. I think Apple is still king on that one.

          You're right that this is important to a lot of people, but not for the reason you think. The fact that Apple is making more profit than Samsung per unit means that by buying a Samsung, I will likely get a much better deal.

          The litany of predictions does not bode well for Apple. In the beginning Apple fanboys said "Android will never sell" and Android sold.

          Next Apple fanboys said "Android would never outsell Iphones" and Android outsold Iphones.

          Then they said, "No single Android device will outsell Iphones" and the SGS3 outsold the Iphone.

          Please predict something epic next, I enjoy seeing them proven wrong.

        • by Xest ( 935314 )

          "I think Apple is still king on that one."

          They are, but will that still hold true when Apple is eventually forced to pay all the patent royalties it owes but that it has been refusing to license?

          Effectively a non-trivial amount of their profit margin over their competitors is because they're not licensing the likes of FRAND and non-FRAND patents that they're legally obligated to.

  • by GeekWithAKnife ( 2717871 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:23PM (#41919403)
    then surely the HTC is the Queen, primarily because it got f****d.
  • by jandrese ( 485 ) <> on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:25PM (#41919425) Homepage Journal
    Is the iPhone 4S outselling the iPhone 5 for some reason? Why is the current Samsung model being compared against Apple's last year model? I'm confused.
    • Becasue Q3 2012 is the last completed set of data available.

    • by geek ( 5680 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:31PM (#41919519)

      These are third quarter sales. If I'm not mistaken the iPhone 5 was a fourth quarter release.

      • by CDS ( 143158 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:46PM (#41919773)
        Which also explains why the numbers are lower for apple. The Galaxy S3 was released in June, if I remember correctly. They had the entire quarter for sales of their new crown jewel. With the iPhone 5 rumored to be coming, everybody was waiting for October and NOBODY was buying a 4S in Q3!
        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          The iPhone 4 (no 's') is also on sale over that time period. I wonder if that might also be part of the numbers - iPhone sales were split between several models, including upcoming models. (Though the fact that an Android phone was right up there is still news.)

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by _xeno_ ( 155264 )

        You are mistaken. The iPhone 5 was released in Q3. That's why this includes the iPhone 5 in the sales figures it's comparing against the Samsung Galaxy SIII.

        Face it, Apple fans, you're time has come. The iPhone is in decline, iOS 6 is an unmitigated disaster, and Android is going to reign supreme. The writing has always been on the wall, now it's finally coming to pass.

        I do feel kind of bad for all the iPhone owners who are going to have to rebuy all their apps for Android in a few years, but - who am I kid

    • Because iPhone 4 to 5 sales are well above S3 sales and probably above the total sales of all of samung's android smart phones for the same time frame (that quarter to today)
    • Because the iPhone 4S is (was, actually) the current best selling phone by total (cumulative) numbers.In that sense, it's 100% fair to compare the two phones that sold the most units in the history of smartphones.

      Maybe the iPhone will outsell the Galaxy S III, time will tell.

    • I'm not sure where these numbers are coming from in general. Apple doesn't breakdown sales by device type, but did announce over 26 million iPhone sales in their fiscal Q3 2012 which ended in July, and 26.9 million in their fiscal Q4 2012 which ended a few weeks ago. Either way, the iPhone 4S number is pure analyst speculation since that data is not available.

  • by badboy_tw2002 ( 524611 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:26PM (#41919433)

    While I'm sure the apple maps thing didn't help, the SIII just seems more sleek and modern. I've had a few android phones and they've always seemed like "almost but not quite" compared to Apple. In this latest round, head to head with the IPhone5 you can't really make an argument based on interface, design, screen size, speed, app quality, etc. Its all there, and I can't help but feel like Apple got complacent. Android has seen revolutionary upgrades to its OS, IOS hasn't taken the big leaps and now they're paying for it.

  • But iPhone 5? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by whitelabrat ( 469237 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:27PM (#41919447)

    The iPhone 5 will absolutely CRUSH in Q4. Not a hater. I'm one of the GS3's in that Q3 number. I was about to buy the iPhone 5 but then Amazon was selling the GS3 for $99 and got my attention. That was that.

    • by geekoid ( 135745 )

      Projects are starting to show the it won't CRUSH it in Q4.

      There just projects, so grain of salt. However, Apple is have supply issues, Samsung is not becasue Samsung has stronger tries to component and material supplies then Foxconn has.

      And The difference between 4s and 5 isn't exactly that great. A trivial amount lighter, and slightly longer, and the requirement to buy all new device that physically connect to the device are all issues as well.

      We will see.

      • You missed the funniest part, the GP posted saying they didn't upgrade due to $$$ yet expect the most $$$ phone yet to win?

        The S3 is 1/2 the price.

    • by jest3r ( 458429 )

      No it won't CRUSH in Q4 which is why we keep hearing about how Foxxcon is having trouble making the iPhone5 and they are having trouble meeting demand ... so Apple will say that they didn't meet sales expectations because they couldn't get enough into the supply chain at the right time.

    • Was it used or from china? Seems odd you'd get an S3 for $99 unless amazon sells phones on contracts. Otherwise everyone should buy one from amazon even if the thing is too big.
    • Re:But iPhone 5? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by wile_e8 ( 958263 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:51PM (#41919839)

      Yeah, but this is yet another data point along with Android-overtaking-iOS timeline. First it was all Android phones outselling iPhones for a quarter. Then it was all Android phones overtaking iPhones in market share, but the iPhone massively outselling any single Android phone. Now one Android phone outsold the iPhone for one quarter, if only for the worst iPhone quarter, but I'm expecting it to become more of a regular occurrence in the future.

      Although a lot of people will be dismissing these numbers as irrelevant outside of fanboi dick-measuring, they do matter. The Android phone app ecosystem was far behind the iOS phone ecosystem until the Android marketshare started too large for it to be ignored, and now they are effectively equivalent. However, when it comes to physical phone accessories, iPhones are massively more supported then any Android phone (at least as far as I can tell from personal observation). Once certain Android phones start selling in numbers comperable to iPhones, the accessory support will follow.

      Also, now that Google has started focusing on tablets, I'm expecting a similar pattern on those in the future.

      • Re:But iPhone 5? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Xest ( 935314 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @02:08PM (#41921197)

        Numbers like this absolutely do matter outside fanboy circles. As I pointed out in another thread yesterday, Apple has lost 20% of it's share price in the 7 weeks since it hit it's all time high, shaving $130bn off the value of the company.

        This figure has actually now increased to 22% including today's trading figures upping that dollar loss in value substantially more. Whether this is because of this news, or the story about them losing their Facetime patent battle I'm not sure:;range=20120919,20121108;compare=;indicator=volume;charttype=area;crosshair=on;ohlcvalues=0;logscale=off;source=undefined [];

        There seems little doubt Apple is faltering now, as their legal strategy has largely fallen flat in all but their own backyard too. The only question is whether they can do anything with next years product releases (iPad 4 and iPhone 6), or release any new devices in new markets to reverse the current trend. If they can't do that then I'd argue they're in pretty severe trouble, the vast majority of their profits are based on their mobile offerings right now. I imagine It'll be an interesting 2013 for those watching Apple one way or another, either a tragic plummet (if iPhone/iPad sales struggle they inherently suffer a risk of iTunes store content and app purchases plummeting too) or an impressive comeback.

        Either way, the tides have certainly changed against Apple this last month or two for the time being at least, despite two new major product releases.

  • by blind biker ( 1066130 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:27PM (#41919457) Journal

    ...there are better phones, IMHO. For instance, the Samsung Galaxy Note II - gorgeous 5" super-AMOLED display, powerful hardware (CPU+RAM) and stylus input - perfection.
    There's even a docking station to connect it to keyboard, mouse and monitor. It's just the kind of phone that keeps a nerd happy.

    • Hmmm, the fact that this is the top seller implies that maybe, just maybe, bigger displays and more powerful hardware isn't necessarily what sells phones.

      • The Note II sold 3.000.000 phones already, even though not all US carriers introduced it, yet. It's more successful than you seem to believe.

        • by jd2112 ( 1535857 )

          The Note II sold 3.000.000 phones already, even though not all US carriers introduced it, yet. It's more successful than you seem to believe.

          Very impressive, particularly since the Note II is WAY over the $199 'sweet spot' for smartphones.

          I bought a S III last weekend, I had to call 8 stores to find one in stock for my carrier (Sprint) because they are selling so fast. And I live in an area that doesn't even have LTE coverage yet.

    • by claytongulick ( 725397 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:35PM (#41919601) Homepage

      I just bought one on T-Mobile - most amazing piece of technology I've ever owned. Absolutely stunning.

      At first I was worried that the whole Pen thing would be a useless gimmick, but I use the damn thing all the time. For jotting down quick notes, it's actually as usable as carrying around a paper notebook, which has always been the bar I've measured these things against.

      In all the technology I've owned over the years, PDA's, tablets, smartphones etc... they've never given me the ability to do away with paper/pencil notebook. This actually has, which is fantastic.

      • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) *

        Are you talking about the Galaxy Note II? The GS3 does not come with a stylus, although you can buy one for it.

  • iPhone 4s? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by grnbrg ( 140964 ) <> on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:28PM (#41919469)
    I'm as much a fandroid as anyone else, but GSIII vs iPhone 4s is a bit disingenuous. The iPhone 5 showed up part way through the 3rd quarter, didn't it?

    How did the GSIII fare against the iPhone 4s plus the iPhone 5 numbers? Seems to me to be a more fair comparison....


    • Re:iPhone 4s? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Juba ( 790756 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:33PM (#41919547)

      How did the GSIII fare against the iPhone 4s plus the iPhone 5 numbers? Seems to me to be a more fair comparison....

      And many people postponed an iPhone 4S purchase because they knew the iPhone 5 was going to be shipped. So it doesn't seem a pertinent period of time to do such a comparison.

    • Wait, so you want to compare one model (GSIII) against two models (4S + 5)? That would seem to skew the numbers even more. If you're going to go that route, do all Samsung phones vs all Apple phones or all Android vs all iOS, etc.

      • I agree. It would not be a fair comparison to simply add together the sales figures for both iPhone models against a single Samsung model. That'd be silly and a somewhat dishonest comparison.

        That said, these numbers, while fair and accurate, don't really paint an accurate overall picture, given that many people were waiting for the inevitable release of the iPhone 5 and that many would-be iPhone 4S sales became iPhone 5 sales after its release. I would think that a better comparison would be to compare sal

    • by geekoid ( 135745 )

      Becasue normally you compare versions with versions. Not 'all of every version.

      If you are going to compare every version of iPhone sold in Q3, then you need to compare every version of android phone Samsung sold in Q3.

      • by Wovel ( 964431 )

        Why? Did Samsung transition from the SIII to something else I'm that quarter? Even if you add the Note and Note Ii to the SIII sales it is less than the 4S+5.. You really going to count all of Samsungs feature phones and pretend like it is the same thing.

    • Re:iPhone 4s? (Score:5, Informative)

      by Solandri ( 704621 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:44PM (#41919743)
      It's not supposed to be a fair comparison. It's supposed to be 2012Q3 sales figures. The press is trying to spin it into a story. If you want just the raw numbers from TFA:

      Galaxy S3: 18 million
      iPhone 4GS: 16.2 million
      iPhone 5: 6 million
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      How did the GSIII fare against the iPhone 4s plus the iPhone 5 numbers? Seems to me to be a more fair comparison....

      Add a little over 5 million. So 21.2M vs. the GS3's 18M.
      4th quarter sales will be whatever number they can build. Considering that they are selling every one they make, their "market share" is as high as it could possibly be.
      That said, I've been buying AAPL puts (the right to sell at a given price) this week, as none of this matters in the short run.

      It will take Apple some time to gets

  • by hottoh ( 540941 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:36PM (#41919609)
    From the fine article:

    "Samsungs' time at the top will be short-lived however, as Apple's iPhone 5 is expected to regain the title to top-selling smartphone in the December quarter."
    • by Wovel ( 964431 )

      And if you count the iPhone 5 in the September quarter Apple sold 22 million of the 4S and 5. The summary could not have been more misleading had they tried. Oh wait. They did try.

  • What? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Dunbal ( 464142 ) * on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:36PM (#41919623)
    The iPhone never was the best selling phone "in the WORLD". Only in the US. Worldwide the iPhone's market share is laughable.
  • Steve! (Score:2, Insightful)

    Steve! Still dead Steve? Take that! You good old Android-Crusher zealot.

    Burn, karma burn! Let thy fumes rise to heaven. Like from sweet smelling incense. Let us drink and be merry.
  • by Minwee ( 522556 ) <> on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:43PM (#41919733) Homepage
    ...Just how many of those people who bought the "iPhone 4S" knew that it wasn't a genuine Samsung Galaxy but were only fooled by its similar design?
  • by Space cowboy ( 13680 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @12:46PM (#41919775) Journal

    From the court case, we saw that Samsung lies about how many it has "shipped". Colour me unimpressed.


    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Wovel ( 964431 )

      It seems likely that Samsung dumped a bunch into the channel during the transition quarter so they could get an analyst to write this story and get some positive press.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward

        No, they could not possibly have dumped any bunches into the channel. Because every single quarter, all these ~Apple zealots~ experts tell me that Samsung is shipping way more than are being sold. So by this point, all the warehouses must be full. It is not possible to dump anything more into the channel.

        I hear they've just installed a big conveyor belt that takes the phones right as they come off the factory production lines, and it takes them straight to the nearest garbage dump. Their business strategy i

  • Kind of...

  • by ArcadeMan ( 2766669 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @01:05PM (#41920049)

    I can understand why some people don't want to get an iPhone, but to see comments about how Android will somehow take over and get the most market share is frightening.

    The last thing we need is yet another OS monopoly. I'd be happy to see 33% Android users, 33% iPhone users, 16% Blackberry users and 16% WebOS users.

    Or is the majority of posters so young that they didn't live through or at least read about how OS monopolies are bad?

  • by jest3r ( 458429 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @01:05PM (#41920057)

    Dear Apple,

    I am a huge fan that has been left underwhelmed recently. Here's what you need to do to turn things around:

    1. You need to offer more selection of "new" iPhones. I want to be able to choose from different new models, new colours, and new price points. You let me do this with iPods ... even iPads now ... so why is there only ever "one" new iPhone???

    2. iOS6. When I got my iPhone 5 I upgraded from iOS3. And to my surprise not much has changed. Many things got worse somehow - feeling clunky with lots of bloat. Siri is useless, Maps took a wrong turn, the Interface hasn't changed at all and the Settings Menu is really unorganized compared to OSX System Prefs for instance.

    3. The screen size. You should have made it proportionally larger. So do that next time. Otherwise most Apps run smaller, Videos look smaller, Photos look smaller. Everything actually looks smaller on the bigger screen.
    (to everyone saying then it wouldn't fit in your hand - take a look at the iPad Mini photos which is massive compared to the iPhone and still fits in one hand).

    4. Laptop pricing. I used to be able to get a 13" MacBook for about $1000.

    Now the only laptop under $1000 is 11" (way too small for everyday business use) and everything else is overpriced. I don't mind paying more for Apple products because I do believe the experience is better - however your laptop pricing is ridiculous these days. I am in teh market for a new laptop and I don't understand why they are so much more expensive now?

    5. OSX ... I love it. But it's starting to feel like you are losing focus on that too. Launchpad is umm... blah. F12 widgets whatever that is I never use (what's with all these hidden secondary desktops??). The App Store on OSX feels half-baked. Moving the Software Update into the App store makes things harder to use. Overall a bit of a fail the past few releases.

    6. iPad Mini, should have been retina. iPod is retina, iPhone is retina, new iPad is retina, MacBooks are moving to Retina ... wtf?

    Anyhow get more iPhone selection, fix the laptop pricing, and refocus your OS's ... and things will be good again.


  • Didn't iPhone sales slow Q3 [] in anticipation of the iPhone 5?

    Regardless, I don't understand why some people want their device to "kill" the competition. Must be some sort of self-identity complex that I am not smart enough to understand. Competition breeds innovation. Ideally these 2 companies will start one-upping each other and consumers on both sides will win.
  • There are more iPhones in the world than any other smartphone. I'd say that makes it the best selling one.

  • by fuzznutz ( 789413 ) on Thursday November 08, 2012 @02:09PM (#41921217)
    Despite all the bickering and indignant attitude, most, if not all, fail to see the obvious. This is MacOS v. Windows again. MacOS was first to market (1984 vs 1985) and had all the goodies that the "cool kids" wanted. Microsoft came out with Windows and it was a pale imitation of the Mac System, but it ran on anybody's hardware. Apple derided Microsoft for their crappy junk. After a few iterations, Windows became the clear winner just because every hardware maker could and did bundle it on their PC for a lot less money than Apple wanted.

    Google has taken a page from the Microsoft play book. Android is already way bigger than IOS. IOS market share is dropping even while raw sales are expanding. Android has parity in usability and features. The top Android phone has sales parity with the top Apple phone. The Android ecosystem is just going to expand.

    As long as Apple earns massive margins on their product, more and more competitors will enter the market. This will reduce prices and steal more of Apple's customers. Many Android phone's have quality equivalent to the iPhone, and sometimes are in different ways better. Microsoft is now entering the market as a serious competitor. Apple knows this and they are pissing in their boots, They are lashing out the only way they know: litigation; just like before. They may have "invented" the smartphone or pioneered the market, but they are doomed by sheer numbers of competitors. They know it. Unless Apple can pull the next "big thing" out of their asses, they will fall back again. And Jobs won't be around to save them next time.
  • New data released on Thursday by market research firm Strategy Analytics finds that Samsung's Galaxy S III was the world's top-selling smartphone model in the third quarter this year, displacing Apple's iPhone for the first time in years.

    ... during the quarter in which Apple had announced that the iPhone 5 was coming soon, so people held off buying the iPhone 4S. In fact, if you add the iPhone 5 sales to the iPhone 4S sales for the quarter, the result tops the Galaxy S III by 4 million.

"Let every man teach his son, teach his daughter, that labor is honorable." -- Robert G. Ingersoll