Nokia's Windows Phone era may still be in its infancy, but the Finnish phone maker has already established itself as the number one manufacturer on the Microsoft platform.
Of course, given how low WinPho's numbers have been so far it's a slight case of damning with faint praise, but Nokia is no doubt still fairly satisfied with how things have gone so far.
It's just over a year ago now that Nokia CEO Stephen Elop announced that the once-dominant phone maker had agreed a partnership with Microsoft to run Windows Phone software on Nokia hardware, which spelt the end for the company's involvement with both MeeGo and (eventually) Symbian.
Since then, both Elop and Microsoft top man Steve Ballmer (Elop's former boss) haven't missed a single opportunity to talk up their vision for a “third ecosystem” able to go toe-to-toe with Android and iOS.
It remains to be seen whether that dream is ever fully realised, but Nokia has at least taken its first step along the way, with Strategy Analytics reporting that a third of all Windows Phones sold in Q4 of last year – 900,000 out of a total of 2.7 million – were Nokia Lumia devices.
The biggest loser from the existing WinPho bunch, it seems, is HTC. “Nokia’s Microsoft smartphone growth during the quarter was achieved partly by capturing market share from HTC,” Strategy Analytics director Tom Kang says. “This is a challenging development for HTC because it is also losing ground to Samsung in the Android segment.
“HTC is now at risk of being caught in a pincer movement between two giants of Samsung in Android and Nokia in Microsoft, and HTC must move with urgency to address the problem.”
Now there's nothing quite like a good pincer movement, but before Nokia fans get too carried away, it's worth noting that a 33% share of the WP spoils still means that two out of every three Windows Phones sold are not made by Nokia.
And to put things into further perspective, Nokia took three months to sell as many phones as Apple manages in roughly three days. In other words, it's a good first step for Nokia, but it's the first step on what's going to be a long journey.