Smartphones are the hottest game in tech town these days, and the leader,
, is losing steam.
Market share among the key smartphone players shifted dramatically last year, according to Gartners' fourth-quarter tally. The smartphone industry overall grew 3.7% in 2008.
The big winners in terms of percentage gains were
Research In Motion
, up 138%, 112% and 85%, respectively, according to Gartner.
The only loser among the top five smartphone makers was Nokia, which suffered a 17% drop in market share, falling to 40.8% from 50.9% in the year-ago quarter.
Nokia's numbers are likely to slide until the second half of the year, when the Finnish phone firm delivers a new crop of smartphones.
Meanwhile, RIM has been seeing
for its new Storm and older Curve devices. And
for Motorola in its new
Android smartphones. There's also
upcoming Pre phone. All these smartphones are expected to land this year.
Nokia investors shrugged off the nearly three-month-old smartphone performance data Wednesday. The stock was up 52 cents, or 5%, to $10.23 at mid-day.