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Razr tops cell phone sales in boom quarter

Motorola's slim handset helps keep the company atop the rankings, as LG, Nokia and Samsung duke it out for second. Photos: Razr to Nano, when design matters

Motorola's Razr phone was the top seller in the third quarter as overall cell phone sales in the U.S. jumped 30 percent from a year earlier.

According to market researcher The NPD Group, Motorola accounted for 30 percent of the 31.6 million handsets sold in the third quarter of 2006. Three of the company's cell phones, including the ultrathin Razr, were among the five top-selling models (the others were the models V551 and V180).

Sales of cell phones to consumers amounted to just over $2 billion for the three-month period. Unit growth was up 7 percent from 29.6 million in the second quarter.

"The handset market was very robust in the third quarter," Neil Strother, NPD research director, said in a statement. "These numbers reflect strong replacement demand among consumers, coupled with more limited growth from new subscribers."

Earlier this month, Motorola credited the Razr with helping to boost its financial returns for the quarter. The company reported a profit of $1.75 billion on revenue of $9.42 billion for the July-September period.

The competition for the No. 2 position continues to be intense, with LG Electronics, Nokia and Samsung controlling 16 percent market share each, NPD said. Among the top five individual phones, Nokia's 6010 was in second place and LG's VX6100 was in third.

In the GSM market, Motorola's share was 39 percent, followed by Nokia with 22 percent and Samsung with 14 percent. LG led the CDMA handset market with a 27 percent market share; Samsung and Motorola tied for second with 18 percent.

Reuters contributed to this report.