Taiwan’s HTC Corp (宏達電) was the second-biggest vendor of new smartphones in the US over a three-month period recently, leading market research company Nielsen said.
A newly released Nielsen research note said that 21 percent of US mobile phone users who purchased a new smartphone between August and October last year bought an HTC device, the second-biggest share behind Apple Inc’s 29 percent.
BlackBerry maker Research In Motion Ltd came third with a 17 percent market share, followed by Samsung Electronics Co and Motorola Mobility Holdings Inc with 11 percent each, the note said, based on a market survey.
In the third quarter last year, HTC was the biggest seller of Google Inc’s Android devices and Microsoft Corp’s Windows phones in the US market, ahead of Motorola and Samsung, Nielsen said.
Nielsen’s findings are somewhat at odds with recent data based on shipments released by research firm Canalys. It said that HTC shipped 5.7 million smartphones in the US in the third quarter, to edge Apple and Samsung as the leading vendor in the country with a market share approaching 25 percent.
Samsung was second with shipments of 4.9 million units in the quarter, followed by Apple with 4.6 million units, as consumers waited for the launch of the next-generation iPhone, Canalys said.
The new iPhone was launched in October, which could have given it a boost in the Nielsen survey.
While HTC came out well in both the Nielsen and Canalys surveys, investment bank Morgan Stanley has warned that the Taiwan-based company is losing market share in the US as a result of a rapid change in the smartphone market and intensifying competition.
Morgan Stanley said HTC is threatened by rivals in the Android camp — both from the market’s high-end (mainly Samsung) and its middle to lower end (China-based brands) — and by the wider distribution of Apple’s iPhone 4S, which is expected to eat into its sales.
A survey the investment bank conducted the week after Thanksgiving found that only 8 percent of respondents said they would buy an HTC device as their next smartphone.