Retaining its crown as the UK’s best-selling smartphone for a tenth consecutive month, the Samsung Galaxy S3 has rounded off a strong year of sales, maintaining its footing as an iPhone beater ahead of the recently confirmed March 14 Samsung Galaxy S4 launch event.
Although Apple has yet to topple the Samsung Galaxy S3, the latest figures, compiled by uSwitch and based on handset sales, pre-orders and live searches, have seen the iPhone 5 jump back up the charts to third having struggled in a post-Christmas spree that saw a selection of budget phones rise up the charts.
Sandwiched between the Samsung Galaxy S3 and the iPhone 5 is a new Android offering from Sony, with the CES 2013 unveiled Sony Xperia Z landing as the chart’s highest new entry based on pre-orders alone.
“Perhaps the most surprising entrant in this month’s chart is Sony,” Ernest Doku, a telecoms expert at uSwitch said. “After record losses in 2012 due to natural disasters and a strong yen, the Japanese colossus has upped its game, producing a feature-packed, high-spec model in the Xperia Z. Storming into the second spot on pre-orders alone, this is one to watch in 2013.”
A new powerhouse on the smartphone scene, the Sony Xperia Z pairs a wide selection of premium innards with a raft of new features including an IP57 waterproof coating. Lining up at just 7.9mm thick, the Sony Xperia Z specs sheet sees a 5-inch 1080p Full HD display partnering a 1.5GHz quad-core Qualcomm processor, 2GB of RAM and a 13.1-megapixel rear-mounted camera.
Despite the Samsung Galaxy S3 dropping six places to ninth, the aging handset shows the continued interest in the Samsung Galaxy brand with the Samsung Galaxy Ace and Samsung Galaxy Note 2 also featuring in the chart’s top 10. Although manufacturing four of the top 10 devices, Samsung has seen its stranglehold on the smartphone scene reduced.
“Although Samsung continues to stay ahead of the competition and is holding onto pole position, the popularity of the Galaxy range is starting to wane thanks to serious competition from rival manufacturing giants,” Doku stated.
He added: “There are hotter, newer kids on the block and the Xperia Z’s early popularity is really exciting for beleaguered Sony. It has the winning combination of being packed full of features and priced right. It’s about time the iPhone 5 and the S3 were challenged. But the anticipated launch of a new Galaxy handset later this month could make it hard for Sony to build on this early success.”
Following this week’s MWC 2013 conference in Barcelona and with the imminent Samsung Galaxy S4 release date, it is expected that future smartphone charts will soon take on a dramatically different list of entrants.
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