Samsung took back top place in world smartphone sales in 1Q


Apple Inc.’s [fortune-stock symbol=”AAPL”] reign as the world’s top-selling smartphone maker didn’t last long.

According to new research by Gartner, Samsung took back the top spot in the first quarter of the year, selling 81.1 million units compared to the Cupertino-based giant’s 60.2 million.

Samsung managed to juice its sales by 11% quarter-on-quarter, as its new Galaxy models gained traction.

But a number of factors highlighted by Gartner suggest the longer-term trend still seems to favor Apple. For one thing, Apple became the biggest smartphone vendor in China in the first quarter, with the iPhone 6 driving it to a 73% gain in year-on-year sales.

That put it ahead of local upstart Xiaomi for the first time, as well as Samsung, which had been top dog in China until last year. With that surge, China has become Apple’s biggest national market for the first time, overtaking the U.S..

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