It's easy to forget when talking about smartphone and mobile OS market shares that while the likes of Android and Windows Phone 7 are coming at things via a number of handsets and manufacturers, for iOS things pretty much begin and end with the iPhone, with a bit of help now from the iPad.
So it really is no mean feat at all that the fruit-flavoured phone maker now holds the third-biggest chunk of the US phone market, behind Samsung and LG.
The long-awaited launch of the CDMA iPhone on the Verizon network has provided the impetus for the iPhone's latest surge of momentum, and sees both HTC and Motorola drop a place in the US mobile heirarchy, according to NPD's first quarter sales figures for the US.
“Apple and Verizon had a very successful launch of the iPhone 4, which allowed the iPhone to expand its market share that was previously held back by its prolonged carrier exclusivity with AT&T,” said Ross Rubin, executive director of industry analysis at NPD.
Overall, Samsung still led the way with 23% of the market, followed by LG (18%) and Apple (14%). In terms of individual handsets, though, the iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS locked out the top two places in an Apple whitewash.
Notably, the iPhone's surge on the back of the Verizon launch was also responsible for stalling Android's overall growth – even if only temporarily. The Google OS' market share dipped slightly from 53% to 50% in the quarter, with Apple's share going the other way from 19% to 28%, and BlackBerry's long decline continuing as it shed another 5% to end the quarter with just 14% of the market.
The other point of interest to emerge from the first 2011 figures to emerge from the US is that for the first time smartphones accounted for more than half of all mobile phones sold, despite the resultant increase in average selling price.
“Despite the higher fees, consumers are adopting those handsets, as they are important to stay in touch with the rest of the world,” Rubin said.