Nokia, the world's largest mobile phone maker, sold four in every 10 phones globally for the first time at the end of last year, boosting full-year operating profits by 46 per cent to €7.9bn ($11.6bn).
Strategy Analytics, a research company, said yesterday that Nokia's 40 per cent fourth quarter market share was larger than the combined 35.6 per cent of its three largest rivals, Motorola, Samsung and Sony Ericsson.
Motorola, the US's largest mobile phone maker, last year lost its position as the world's second largest to Samsung and this week reported an 84 per cent drop in fourth quarter profit to $100m and forecast a loss in the current quarter. But Samsung is gaining on its Finnish rival, saying last week that fourth quarter profit from its telecommunications business, which includes mobile phones, rose 67 per cent, fuelled by its range of aggressively priced products.
Earlier Sony Ericsson had reported that in 2007 their sales crossed 100 Million handsets.
Sony Ericsson gained market share during the quarter due to the continued success of such products as the K550 Cyber-shot™ and the W200, W300 and W580 Walkman® phones in the Americas and Europe. Although Average Selling Price (ASP) increased slightly sequentially during the quarter, as a result of the introduction of new flag-ship Walkman® and Cyber-shot™ phones such as the W910 and K850 models, the trend for falling ASPs year-on-year reflects the company’s direction to broaden its product portfolio.
During the fourth quarter Sony Ericsson announced that it had entered into a series of agreements with Motorola, Inc. whereby Motorola acquired 50% of the share capital in U.I. Holdings BV, the Dutch owner of the Swedish software company UIQ Technology AB, which was acquired by Sony Ericsson from Symbian Ltd. earlier in the year. The transaction was ratified by the appropriate competition authorities during the quarter.
Our friend Tomi has a very good analysis on this topic on his blog here.