5-inch phones account for 21 per cent of Q3 smartphone sales

With smartphones continuing to increase in size, latest figures have suggested that handsets 5-inches and larger accounted for 21 per cent of Q3 smartphone sales.

According to figures compiled by the International Data Corporation (IDC), smartphones between 5- and 7-inches in size have grown in popularity over the past year. With Q3 seeing larger screen handsets account for more than a fifth of all devices sold during the past three months, this figure marks a 700 per cent year-on-year rise.

Although Apple has held firm in the 4-inch smartphone sector with the iPhone 4S, the flagship smartphones of most other manufacturers are now pushing into the realms of the 5-inch form factor.

While the market leading Samsung Galaxy S4 measures in at 5-inches in size, the new LG G2 boasts an even larger 5.2-inch Full HD display. On top of this, more dedicated ‘phablets’ have been introduced, with the likes of the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 sporting a 5.7-inch screen.

“Almost all successful Android vendors have added one or more 5-7-inch phablets to their product portfolios,” Ryan Reith, Program Director with IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker said. He added: “Nokia’s recent announcement of the Lumia 1320 and 1520 put them in the category as well.

“In 3Q13, phablet shipments accounted for 21 per cent of the smartphone market, up from just 3 per cent a year ago.”

Looking at the latest market shares which has seen the Android and Windows Phone platforms grow as Apple’s section of the market drop, Reith added: “We believe the absence of a large-screen device may have contributed to Apple’s inability to grow share in the third quarter.”

According to the latest IDC figures, the biggest loser over the past year has been ailing manufacturer BlackBerry. Having held a 7.7 per cent market share 12 months ago, the company’s control of the smartphone scene dropped to just 1.7 per cent during Q3 2013.

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