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iPhone sales beat Android after iPhone 4S launch

iPhone sales beat Android sales in October, following the launch of the iPhone 4S.

iPhone sales have beaten Android sales for the first time in ages, statistics from October suggest, with the release of the iPhone 4S injecting fuel into Apple's popularity rocket.

Data from the incredibly named Kantar Worldpanel ComTech suggests that last month saw Apple nab a 42.8 per cent share of all smart phone sales, compared to Android's 35 per cent.

But while Apple had a great October, Android is still beating the Cupertino lot as of the end of October, with a 46 per cent slice of the mobile phone pie (and what a delicious pie that is). That's an 11.8 per cent increase from last year.

Also interesting is that iPhone buyers appear to be fiercely loyal, with 75 per cent of iPhone 4S owners having previously owned an iPhone. That's a massively high figure when you consider the iPhone 4S is a pretty minor upgrade to the previous model.

We were sceptical as to whether nuggets like an improved camera, a more powerful processor and snarky robo-butler Siri would be enough to convince iPhone owners to upgrade, but apparently they're doing the trick.

While it sounds like great news for Apple, there's another side to that statistic -- with Apple primarily flogging phones to existing customers, rivals such as HTC, Samsung or Nokia still have a shot at winning over buyers who aren't loyal to Apple.

Worldpanel ComTech gets its data from 15,000 people in Great Britain, who report every four weeks on whether they've changed their phone, tariff or network. If anything has changed, information on date of purchase, phone model and retailer is collected.

What do you think of the iPhone 4S? The best smart phone in the world? Or an overpriced lump of rubbish? Sound off in the comments, or on our Facebook wall.