Android Phones Dominate Global Market Share as Blackberry Crashes

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Worldwide shipments of smartphones running Google's (GOOG) Android operating system have broken the eighty percent mark for the first time ever.

According to Strategy Analytics results for the third quarter show Android phones accounted for 81 percent of the 251 million new cellular devices distributed around the world. That includes phones manufactured by Samsung, HTC, Motorola, LG, Huawei and others. The Android results come mainly at the expense of Blackberry (BBRY) and Apple (AAPL).

More than four out of every five new smartphones now run on the Android platform. One year ago Android phones accounted for 75% of the global total.

Most of Android's gains came from Blackberry's losses. While Blackberry phones garnered 4.3% of the marketplace in Q3/'12 this year the company could only muster 1% of the total this year. The survey said decline was due to a small number of devices able to run on the company's latest BB10 operating system.

Apple's iPhone shipments dropped from a 15.6% share last year to 13.4% in 2013. A lack of lower-priced iOS models was cited as the cause for the poor showing. Apple's recently released iPhone 5c should help improve that situation when fourth quarter results are tallied.

The big winner turned out to be Microsoft (MSFT). For the first time more than 10 million Windows smartphones were shipped in a quarter. Microsoft's global share nearly doubled jumping from 2.1% to 4.1% year-over-year.

Most of the Windows Phone gains came from the sale of Nokia (NOK) devices in Europe, Asia and especially the United States. According to Strategy Analytics Windows Phone is now the world's fastest growing major smartphone platform but notes the overall share is low and the operating system still struggle to attract buyers in a number of key markets including Japan, South Korea and Africa.

The survey found that overall global smartphones shipments have grown a very strong 45 percent in the past twelve months.

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