Samsung Galaxy S3 outsells iPhone for first time

The Samsung Galaxy S3 is the best-selling phone in the world -- beating the iPhone for the first time.

The Samsung Galaxy S3 is the best-selling phone in the world -- beating the iPhone for the first time.

The latest sales figures from the numbercrunchers at Strategy Analytics show the S3 top at the tills, shifting 18 million phones in the last three months. Meanwhile 16.2 million iPhone 4S blowers changed hands.

The quad-core, 4.8-inch S3 deserves every bit of its success. A gorgeous screen, excellent camera and exceptional all-round performance earned it a coveted CNET UK Editor's Choice Award.

In the iPhone's defence, the period in question saw many customers holding off buying an Apple phone as they waited for the new iPhone 5 to drop. Arriving in shops in September, the iPhone 5 had only the very end of the quarter in question to make up for the dip in sales of the 4S.

The newest iPhone has done boffo business from day one, selling a healthy 6 million phones in this same period. All the signs suggest it'll probably retake the top spot when figures for the last quarter of the year are compiled. But the S3 will continue to sell like hot cakes too, especially with a couple of fillips arriving recently: new colours, new Jelly Bean software, and a 4G version called the S3 LTE.

In total, the S3 has sold over 30 million phones.

As Samsung celebrates, Nokia's had a shocker and RIM's in the bin: sales figures from Canalys suggest that Nokia Lumia and BlackBerry phones sales are struggling, even overtaken by the likes of Lenovo. HTC has also seen sales flag.

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