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Apple Doubles iPhone Market Share

Smartphones continued to gain market share in the first quarter, and Apple and Research In Motion were the big winners, according to data from Gartner.

Despite the dip in mobile phone sales, sales of smartphones continued to grow 12.7% for the first quarter, according to a new report from Gartner.

The report, "Dataquest Insight: Market Share For Mobile Devices," said smartphone sales surpassed 36.4 million units, which represented 13.5% of all mobile device sales for the three-month period. The report found Apple, Nokia, and Research In Motion were the big winners for the quarter.

Nokia continued to be the global leader with 41.2% of the market, but Research In Motion is rapidly gaining market share. Thanks to popular handsets like the BlackBerry Storm, RIM captured 19.9% of the market, an increase from 13.3% for the same period last year. The iPhone 3G was a popular handset, and Apple was able to double its market share to 10.8% from 5.3%.

"Much of the smartphone growth during the first quarter of 2009 was driven by touch-screen products, both in the midtier and high-end devices," Roberta Cozza, principal analyst at Gartner, said in a statement. "Touch for the sake of touch was enough of a driver in the midtier space, but tighter integration with applications and services around music, mobile e-mail, and Internet browsing made the difference at the high end of the market."

The news wasn't as good for regular cell phones, though, as the report found sales decreased 9.4% from a year ago. The first quarter is typically not as robust as the previous quarter because most of the blockbuster handsets come out during the holiday season, but mobile phone sales have been hit with slumping demand caused by the global economic crisis.

Most companies are just starting the hard work of mobilizing workforces by bringing the software they use to smartphones, but there are multiple factors a company has to consider to mobilize efficiently and securely. InformationWeek analyzed this issue in an independent report, and it can be downloaded here (registration required).

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