New research has found that global sales of mobile phones have declined for the first time since 2009.
A report from analysts Gartner has shown that worldwide sales have declined by 2% year-on-year to 419.1m units in the first quarter of 2012.
According to Anshul Gupta, principal research analyst at Gartner, the decline is due in part to a slowdown in demand across the Asia/Pacific markets and also a relative lack of key handset launches in the first quarter.
However the report did hold some positive news, particularly for Samsung who became the world’s top mobile phone vendor, displacing Nokia who have held the top spot since 1998. Additionally, major uplifts are expected in the remainder of the year with the launch of the Apple iPhone 5 and strong home market expectations for Huawei, ZTE and Lenovo.
RIM did not fare so well in the survey, with its global market share declining to just 2.4%. However, the report highlighted that the forthcoming BB10 OS may lead to a turnaround in the fortunes of the Canadian manufacturer.
According to the research, the smartphone market does on the whole continue to grow with sales up by 44.7% year-on-year. Apple and Samsung dominate this sector with a combined share of almost 50%.