Nokia is top mobile vendor for Q1

IDC says worldwide mobile phone market grew 21.7% in the first quarter of 2010

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Nokia is top mobile vendor for Q1 Nokia has been named the top mobile phone vendor for the first quarter of 2010 based on shipment volume. (Getty Images)
By  Vineetha Menon Published  May 2, 2010

Nokia is the leading mobile phone vendor for the first quarter of 2010 having sold more than 107 million of its phones, according to research firm IDC.

The figure represents a nearly 16% improvement over the same quarter last year when the Finnish mobile giant managed to sell about 93 million cellphone units.

IDC's research fits in well with Nokia's first-quarter results, which showed a profit of €349 million ($464 million) a boost from €122 million a year ago, helped mainly due to demand for smartphones. The firm's revenue also grew by 3% to reach €9.5 billion but it hasn't been enough to satisfy the expectations of both industry analysts as well as the market. According to several reports, Nokia's stock fell more 12% during trading in Helsinki following the announcement. CEO Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo also admits to the firm being up against 'tough competition'.

"In Q1, Nokia delivered both year-on-year net sales and operating profit growth. We continue to face tough competition with respect to the high end of our mobile device portfolio, as well as challenging market conditions on the infrastructure side," said Kallasvuo at the time.

But Nokia seems to lead the pack by a mile as Samsung, at the number two position, shipped only about 64 million of its phones, based on IDC's estimates. LG Electronics comes in third, while Research in Motion finally made its first appearance in the top five mobile phone vendor list with total shipments of BlackBerry smartphones exceeding more than 10 million units, followed closely by Sony Ericsson.

According to Kevin Restivo, senior research analyst with IDC's Worldwide Mobile Phone Tracker, the entrance of RIM into the top five "underscores the sustained smartphone growth trend that is driving the global mobile phone market recovery".

"Key to its success in the first quarter was the popularity of its BlackBerry Curve 8520 and BlackBerry Bold 9700 across multiple markets as well as its global prepaid offerings. Strong consumer adoption, particularly among text-crazy teens, has also fuelled demand for BlackBerry devices," adds the IDC statement.

The worldwide mobile phone market grew 21.7% in the first quarter of this year, with vendors shipping nearly 295 million units compared to about 242 million units for the same quarter in 2009. 

"Whereas last year we saw much uncertainty around demand and overall reluctance to introduce new devices, vendors have been very vocal about their intentions this year, with some even launching new devices in the first quarter of 2010. In addition, the continued emphasis on converged mobile devices points to greater revenue generation and profitability opportunities for vendors, which is a welcome change compared to the same quarter a year ago," commented Ramon Llamas, senior research analyst with IDC's Mobile Devices Technology and Trends team.

IDC believes the rebound will continue throughout 2010 but not at the same growth rate as seen in this first quarter.

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