Samsung Electronics overtook Nokia as the world’s biggest vendor of mobile-phones last quarter, ending the Finnish company’s 14-year run as the global industry leader, according to researcher Strategy Analytics.
Samsung shipped 93.5 million handsets in the first quarter, 36 percent more than a year earlier, and compared with 82.7 million for second-ranked Nokia, Strategy Analytics said in an e-mailed statement on Friday. It’s the first time the Suwon, South Korea-based company led in phone shipments, the Boston-based researcher said.
Demand for Galaxy smartphones helped Samsung on Friday post first-quarter net income of 5.05 trillion won ($4.5 billion), beating analysts’ estimates. Nokia last week reported a 1.34 billion euros ($1.8 billion) first-quarter operating loss after handset sales slumped.
Nokia had been the biggest mobile-phone maker by shipments since 1998, when the company took over the spot from Motorola, Neil Mawston, an executive director at Strategy Analytics.
Apple is the world’s third-biggest maker of mobile phones, after shipments rose 89 percent to 35.1 million last quarter, according to Strategy Analytics.
Samsung also regained the lead from Apple as the world’s biggest vendor of smartphones in the first quarter. The South Korean electronics maker shipped 44.5 million smartphones in three months of the year, giving it about 31 percent of the market, Strategy Analytics said the statement. Apple shipped 35.1 million units in the first quarter, giving it an about 24 percent share, it said.
Nokia was the third biggest, according to the statement.
Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services on Friday lowered its long-term corporate credit rating on Nokia to junk status from investment grade and placed the outlook as negative.