Last week, Strategy Analytics stated that the first quarter of 2014 saw a record 285 million smartphone shipments around the world, while today Canalys announced a slightly lower number at 279.4 million for the same period. Regardless, it’s a huge amount, increasing by about 30% over last year.
Canalys’s report noted that shipments were mainly powered by Google’s Android OS at 81%, with iOS and Windows Phone clocking in at 16% and 3% respectively. As for specific manufacturers, Samsung is still the king, representing 31% of shipments, followed by Apple at 16%. Unfortunately, BlackBerry didn’t even make the cut.
At one time the term ‘phablet’ was humorous, but now is the norm. According to the release, smartphones with a 5-inch display or higher — such as the Note 3, Nexus 5, Xperia Z2, HTC One M8 — grew 369% over last year and represented 34% of total shipments.
The chart above shows that many devices are still below the 5-inch mark, mainly Apple’s iPhone with a 4-inch display. Canalys said that “Apple plainly needs a larger-screen smart phone to remain competitive, and it will look to address this in the coming months.” Apple is heavily rumoured to launch the iPhone 6 with a 4.7-inch display this fall.