By Daniel Hunter

The latest smartphone sales data from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech shows LG coming back to life in Great Britain with its share hitting 4.3% in the three months to February 2013, almost solely driven by the Google branded Nexus 4.

“Over the past few months, there have been signs of a more competitive manufacturer dynamic," Dominic Sunnebo, global consumer insight director at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, explained.

"LG’s share of the market has grown by +4% year on year and HTC’s share (9.1%) is beginning to edge up again — its refreshed HTC One X+ and HTC 8S are selling well, confirming its position as the third largest smartphone manufacturer in Great Britain.”

Nokia has also seen share gains over the year and holds 5.6% of the market — this is now being driven by its Windows 8 devices appealing to consumers, rather than sales of older Windows 7 models on promotion, which is good news for margins. However, Samsung remains the top smartphone brand in Great Britain with 36.2% and Apple in second position with 29.0% share of sales in the three months to February.

“The launch of the BlackBerry Z10 has not resulted in an immediate turn around for the Canadian company in Great Britain," Sunnebo continued.

"Although the new model received great reviews, it’s going to take time for BlackBerry to see share gains. Consumers just don’t have the same levels of pent up demand for the handset as they did for the iPhone 5.

“Over the past few years it has been BlackBerry’s budget devices, like the Curve 8520 and 9320, which have been selling well and these attract a young, price sensitive consumer. The Z10 is a high-end handset with a price to match, so going after its existing base of consumers will require a significant trade up. The handset is likely to start selling in more serious numbers once the launch price falls, and BlackBerry 10 in general, when the range is padded out with a number of wallet-friendly mid-range offerings.”

Android continues to hold the number one OS spot in Great Britain with 58.3% in the latest period, up from 48.3% a year ago. iOS also edges up to 29% share. Windows Phone progress continues, with its smartphone sales share hitting 6.7% in Great Britain, up from 3% the previous year.

In the latest period, smartphone penetration reached 63% in Great Britain, with smartphones making up 83% of mobile sales.

Strong sales of the iPhone 5 in tier one Chinese cities Beijing, Shanghai and Chongqing have helped Apple perform strongly in the world’s largest smartphone market with 25.8% share of the urban Chinese market. Samsung remains the top manufacturer in urban China holding 28.2% share of the market with Lenovo in third position (9.3%).

In the US the smartphone market remains dominated by iOS and Android, with a combined share of 94.7%, but Windows Phone has finally broken through the 4% share mark driven by the flagship Nokia Lumia 920.

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