Apple Takes 3 Of Top 5 Spots In U.S. Mobile Phone Sales For Q4 2012, Says NPD

Apple has managed to nab three of the top 5 spots for the top-selling mobile phones in the U.S. during Q4 2012 according to the NPD Group, with the iPhone 5, iPhone 4S and iPhone 4 ranking first, third and fourth, respectively. Apple also retained the crown for best-selling overall smartphone maker, accounting for 39 percent of smartphone sales in Q4 2012, compared to Samsung’s 30 percent.

iPhone 4 sales rose 79 percent compared to Q3 2012, and iPhone 4S sales grew 43 percent sequentially, while the iPhone 5 accounted for 43 percent of all iPhone sales in Q4 2012, which is roughly in line with the numbers we’re seeing out of carrier data as well. It also made up nearly two-thirds of all smartphone sales on post-paid plans with a value over $200, NPD says. Samsung made considerable gains on the year, going up to 30 percent of all U.S. smartphone sales in Q4 2012 from 21 percent in the year ago quarter, but the gains were mostly at the expense of other Android OEMs, including HTC, while Apple’s overall share remained constant.

Net Applications also released its monthly report on mobile OS share, which found that Apple’s iOS increased slightly in terms of traffic, accounting for 60.56 percent of all mobile operating systems, while Android actually took a bit of a dip to 24.51 percent, continuing a decline that has occurred over the past two months from a peak high in November of 28.02 percent. It looks like Apple’s release of the iPhone 5 might have essentially begun to erase earlier gains made by the longer availability of the Samsung Galaxy S III, but Apple still has some ground to make up if it wants to climb back to its 2012 high of nearly 66 percent web traffic share among mobile devices.

Apple’s holiday quarter, which included 47.8 million iPhone sales and 22.9 million iPads, looks to have helped it in terms of remaining the leader in both smartphone and mobile device sales in the U.S., and in keeping the hold it has on mobile browsing. The strong quarter also accounts for Apple’s regaining the role of largest mobile phone maker by volume in the U.S., an honor it reclaimed according to the latest data from Strategy Analytics released earlier today.