Apple Overtakes Nokia As Most Profitable Handset Maker

Posted November 10, 2009 at 8:58pm by iClarified | Please help us and submit a translation by clicking here | 4537 views

Apple has overtaken Nokia as the world's most profitable handset vendor according to Strategy Analytics.

TelephonyOnline reports that Nokia can still claim the largest global market share but Apple has overtaken in profits due to Nokia's stagnant presence in the U.S. and the economic downturn.

Strategoy Analytics estimates that Apple’s iPhone operating profit came in at $1.6 billion in Q3, while Nokia recorded only $1.1 billion in operating profit. “With strong volumes, high wholesale prices and tight cost controls, the PC vendor has successfully broken into the mobile phone market in just two years,” said analyst Alex Spektor in the research note.

It is not all bad news for Nokia. Even with falling profits, it managed to capture 37.9% market share and ship 16.4 million handsets in the third quarter. Strategy Analytics said that focusing on the U.S., Apple’s high-profit home turf, will be the key to recovering in 2010, but that won’t be an easy fight. Nokia’s profit margin for its handset division has been shrinking during the entire 2009 global economic downturn, and the handset-maker is also facing increased pressure from Google Android devices and other new high-end smartphones planned for the rest of the year and into 2010.

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