The iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s launched on Sept. 20, so next month's report should show a spike for Apple sales. Apple's own figures showed that in the opening weekend -- which for the first time included the burgeoning market of China -- its latest iPhones set a new record.
Pre-spike, Apple accounted for 39.3 percent of sales, vs. arch-rival Samsung’s 36.7 percent. It's true, though, that Android's strength is in its diversity and multiple OEMs, and a single OEM -- Samsung -- being this close to Apple was unheard of a few years ago.
Samsung, of course, is the global leader among cell phone, not just smartphone sales.
Globally, Kantar said Samsung had 25.7 percent of smartphone sales during the latest 12-week window, vs. Apple's 23.7 percent. Kantar's report focuses on the sales within a three month period rather than market share figures. Kantar says that such sales shares "exemplify more forward focused trends and should represent the market share for these brands in future."
Of note is the fact that Android's U.S. market share dropped 5.6 percent year-over-year, from 60.7 percent in 2012 to 55.1 percent in Kantar's latest report. Meanwhile, it seemed that iOS had swallowed up all that drop, with a rise of 5.4 percent year-over-year to 39.3 percent.
However, in the all-important country -- still in the early stages of smartphone adoption -- of China, Android has 72.4 percent of recent sales, up 9.2 percent, while iOS dropped 2.7 percent to 20.8 percent.