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Nokia sees market share shrink

10/04/11 Adam Walker Director

The changing of the guard continues with rapid pace as the new kids on the block, such as Apple, Samsung, Blackberry and HTC continue to grow market share at Nokia’s expense.

Nokia posted better than expected profits for the first three months of 2011, down 1% to €344M. More importantly its market share fell 4% to 29% as cheaper rivals and the popularity of competitors' smartphones continued to evaporate Nokia's dominance.

Even with the recently announced deal with Microsoft, with its own struggling Microsoft Phone 7, this not likely to come to fruition with Microsoft’s OS on Nokia’s handsets until later in the year, at the earliest.

The deal which was put forward back in February by Nokia’s CEO and former Microsoft man Stephen Elop, was cemented yesterday in an official signing with Microsoft phone unit President.

Apple also released their latest profits having beaten forecasts, helped by higher-than-expected iPhone sales. Apple reported quarterly net profits of $5.99bn (£3.6bn), nearly double what it made a year ago. Revenue was $24.67bn, a rise of 83%.

Apple sold 18.65 million iPhones, a rise of 113%. Consultants Strategy Analytics said that Apple had now overtaken Nokia as the world's largest handset seller in revenue terms.

Despite Nokia shifting more than 108.5 million handsets in the last quarter - almost six times that sold by Apple - Strategy says that the US's firms revenues from its more expensive phones far outstripped its Finnish rival's.

Apple is not the only problem for Nokia Smartphone maker as HTC took home record profits and revenue in the first quarter thanks to surging consumption of its smartphone lineup. For the quarter ended March 31, the Taiwanese company earned $14.8 billion in Taiwan dollars (US$513 million), almost triple profit from the year-ago quarter

HTC has been a major beneficiary of the rising demand for Android phones, especially those offering higher 4G speeds. Sold through Sprint, the HTC Evo 4G was the first 4G phone to hit the market.

Though HTC didn't reveal the number of smartphones shipped during the first quarter, it had announced in January that it expected to ship 8.5 million handsets, up 157 percent from a year ago.

This change in the mobile phone hierarchy will directly affect Europe as we continue to see Europe’s domination of mobile technology moving slowly towards other continents.

Job cuts are on the horizon for European handset specialist which will lead to bright engineering talent becoming available in the near future.