Samsung and Apple may be the dominant forces in smartphone land circa 2013, but Sony Mobile has quietly moved its way into third place, according to IDC.
The analyst firm’s numbers for Q3 sees Sony jump three places on last year’s positions, pushing past RIM, Nokia and HTC in the process.
That in itself says a lot about Sony’s “achievement”, as the trio of smartphone makers it’s overtaken have had particularly bad years. In fact, despite rising to “best of the rest” status, Sony’s market share has actually shrunk year-on-year, dropping from 5% in Q3 2011 to 4.8% this time around.
But that still eclipses the performances of HTC (down from 10.3% to 4.6%), RIM (down from 9.6% to 4.2%) and most of all Nokia (down from 13.6% to just 3.4%).
The majority of those losses are offset by Samsung’s stellar jump from an already healthy 22.7% to a dangerously dominant 31.3% market share.
Apple, meanwhile, will be quite happy with its own steady consolidation, having risen from 13.8% to 14.6%.
To put it another way, one in three smartphones sold around the world from July to September was a Samsung, while just under one in 20 was a Sony.
It’s a fairly slim success, in other words, but with the transition from Sony Ericsson now completed, the Japanese firm will be quietly optimistic or the future.