* Apple, Samsung end Nokia's 15-yr smartphone mkt dominance
* Overall smartphone sales growth slows to 11.3 pct in Q2
* Basic phone sales drop for first time in 7 quarters
* IDC says 365.4 mln phones sold in Q2; SA says 361 mln
* Analysts on average saw market at 374 mln phones
(Releads, adds details, Strategy Analytics, ABI, links)
By Tarmo Virki, European Technology Correspondent
HELSINKI, July 29 Apple and Samsung
Electronics ended struggling Nokia's
15-year reign at the top of the smartphone sales rankings in the
second quarter, researchers said on Friday.
Nokia has dominated the smartphone market ever since its
1996 launch of the Communicator model, but competition from its
two nearest rivals and a slump in its own sales sent it straight
from first to third place in the three months to June as growth
in the sector starts to slow.
Apple sold a record 20.3 million iPhones in the quarter
despite the fact that its iPhone 4 model is now more than a year
old. Usually success of smartphone models does not last so long.
Apple unveiled its sales last week, but on Friday analysts
also estimated Samsung sold 19 million smartphones in the
quarter, well ahead of Nokia's 16.7 million as it was able to
benefit from booming demand with smartphones using Google's
"Samsung's Galaxy portfolio has proven popular, especially
the high-tier S2 Android model," said Neil Mawston, analyst at
Strategy Analytics estimated smartphone market volume grew
76 percent from a year ago in the second quarter. ABI Research
was somewhat more cautious estimating market grew 62 percent.
Growth on the overall cellphone market slowed too in the
April-June period, as sales of basic phone models dropped for
the first time in seven quarters due to consumers reining in
spending, research firm IDC said on Friday.
IDC said strong smartphone demand boosted the market to
still grow 11.3 percent from a year ago to 365.4 million phones,
but this was a clear slowdown from the 16.8 percent growth seen
in the previous quarter.
Strategy Analytics estimated the total market at 361 million
cellphones in the quarter.
In a Reuters poll, 29 analysts' average forecast for the
total market stood at 374 million phones.
IDC said sales of simpler so-called feature phones fell 4
percent from a year ago due to conservative spending and
continued shift to smartphones, most visible in developed
markets, such as the United States, Japan and Western Europe.
The shrinking feature phone market is having the greatest
impact on some of the world's largest suppliers of mobile
phones," analyst Kevin Restivo said in a statement.
Stalwarts such as Nokia are losing share in the feature
phone category to low-cost suppliers such as Micromax,
TCL-Alcatel and Huawei."
Struggling Nokia, still the world's largest phone
maker by volume, saw its phone sales shrinking 20 percent from a
year ago. This helped Samsung to close the gap to the Finnish
firm in the overall cellphone market to the lowest level ever.
Some analysts already forecast for Samsung to become the
world's largest cellphone vendor next year.
( Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman and Andrew Callus)