Samsung trumps Apple in U.S. smartphone share, analyst says

The Galaxy S4's arrival, plus lower prices for other Samsung models, lifts the phone maker above Apple for the first time since the iPhone 5 came on the scene, according to Canaccord

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Samsung's share of the U.S. smartphone market topped Apple's last month for the first time since the iPhone 5 launched, analysts at investment bank Canaccord Genuity say, thanks to greater supply of Samsung Galaxy S4 smartphones and sales stoked by lower pricing for Galaxy S III and Note 2.

With prices on Apple's iPhone 4/4S reined in as well, overall smartphone sales improved in May compared to the prior month, according to the firm's monthly wireless store surveys.

Samsung takes the mantle a little later than Canaccord had estimated, as the S4 rolled out in late April to demand that outstripped supply, slowing fulfillment to some carriers.

The firm said dominant sales of the S4 versus other Android smartphones were driven by Samsung's extremely strong Galaxy consumer brand and well-run ad campaign. "Despite strong reviews for the HTC One, we worry HTC does not have the brand, distribution, and marketing budget to drive even stronger sales," they said.

BlackBerry and Windows smartphones, following the high-profile Android launches from Samsung and HTC, were soft.

However, the research comes hot on the heels of ComScore's latest U.S. smartphone industry report, which estimates that through the end of April, Apple was still at the top of the heap with a market share of 39.2 percent.