A new report has found that mobile device shipments, including notebooks, tablets and smartphones, exceeded 300 million units in the first quarter of 2013. According to research from Canalys, shipments increased 37.4% year-over-year to reach 308.7 units. Android manufacturers continue to ship more devices than any other vendor, totaling 59.5% of all shipments. Strong demand for the iPhone and iPad gave Apple a 19.3% share, ahead of Microsoft’s 18.1% share from shipments of Windows-powered notebooks, tablets and smartphones.
The research firm found that out of all three categories, the tablet market continues to grow the fastest. Worldwide shipments of tablets were found to have increased 106.1% year-over-year to 41.9 million units. Apple continues to lead the market with a 46.4% share, although Google, Amazon and other Android vendors have begun to eat away at the company’s once dominant market share.
Smartphone shipments grew 47.9% year-over-year in Q1 to 216.3 million units with Android devices accounting for 75.6% of all shipments. Samsung dominated all other vendors once again, growing its volume by 64.3% year-over-year, and giving it a market share above 32%. Apple, in contrast, only experienced modest annual growth of 6.7%, the lowest level since the launch of the original iPhone back in 2007. The company still shipped 37 million iPhones, however, so it’s not as if it’s in dire straits.
“HTC and Samsung have raised the bar with their latest handsets and Apple needs to respond with its next iPhone,” said Pete Cunningham, Canalys Principal Analyst. “The iPhone user interface is now six years old and badly in need of a refresh. Hardware-wise, the biggest dilemma that Apple faces is what it does with the size of the display on the next iPhone. It cannot afford to ignore the trend for larger displays in premium smart phones.”
Rounding out the top five were Huawei, ZTE and LG, all with less than 5% market share each. Huawei and ZTE continue to experience strong sales in China, representing 84% and 71% of their shipments respectively, while LG has benefited from doubling down on its smartphone business.
Notebook PC shipments fell 13.1% from the same period in 2012, reaching only 50.5 million units as consumers shifted their focus to tablets.
“While there are macroeconomic factors that contribute to this ongoing trend, the impact of tablets must not be understated,” said Canalys Research Analyst Pin-Chen Tang. “The combination of ARM-based chipsets and Android has taken computing devices to new, lower price points. If Microsoft and Intel are serious about capitalizing on this exploding market, both will need to ensure that their OEMs can remain competitive on price.”