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iPhone Shipments Show Strong Growth In Q1

The market research firm iHS iSuppli has published new data, showing that iPhone shipments increased almost 15 per cent in Q1.

Apple shipped 18.6 million smartphones in the first quarter, a rise of 2.4 million from the fourth quarter of 2010. The iPhone’s success is resounding, as on the global scale smartphone shipments have dropped by 1.5 per cent, probably being caused by the sluggish retail season.

iHS iSuppli mentioned that the iPhone sales success is also due to the debut of the Verizon version.

"Not only did this allow Apple to expand its target market and boost shipments, it also placed additional pressure on rival smart phone brands--including Motorola, Samsung, LG and HTC--that focus on Verizon Wireless as a major customer," Tina Teng, IHS senior analyst for wireless communications, mentioned in a statement.

Apple is gradually catching Nokia’s leading position, as the Finnish company saw a drop in the last year from 38.6% to 24.3% of the market. It would seem that Nokia’s deal with Microsoft could help them maintain their leading position, but according to IHS iSuppli, consumers are reluctant to buy Symbian based phones and phones with the MeeGo operating system. The Microsoft deal could start yielding real results only after one year.

"The reduction of shipments reflects inventory control efforts in the smartphone market, rather than weakening consumer demand. This decline does not change the IHS iSuppli forecast of 60 per cent growth in worldwide smartphone shipments for the entire year of 2011”, Teng said, referring to the global drop in smartphone shipments.