Samsung tops the global smartphone market, as HTC, Nokia, and RIM fall further behind

Samsung Logo Door OfficesMarket analyst company IDC has released the latest version of its Mobile Phone Tracker information chart, showing where it places the world’s major phone manufacturers regarding smartphone market share and sales. Samsung is the star of the show, a fact reflected in its own quarterly results. Nokia, HTC, and Research in Motion all show signs of suffering at both its, and Apple’s, hands.

Samsung has retained its position at the top of the charts, with a 31.3-percent market share, up from 22.7-percent last year. It’s estimated to have shipped 56 million smartphones between July and September, a huge improvement over the already impressive 28 million from the same period last year.

The Korean company has also announced its financial report for the same period, posting $7.4 billion in profits, beating its previous record for the fourth consecutive time. A Reuters piece on the subject puts its smartphone shipments at 58 million, slightly higher than IDC’s figure, and says that between 18 and 20 million of that amount were Galaxy S3 handsets.

HTC drops behind RIM and ZTE

Apple comes second in IDC’s ranking, with 15-percent of the smartphone market, up from 13.8-percent this time last year, and we all know how it has been performing recently. Research in Motion is gamely holding on to third position with a market share of 4.3-percent, down from 9.6-percent last year, but ZTE is a mere 0.1-percent behind — making a position change likely in IDC’s next report.

Finally, the top five is rounded out by HTC. This time last year, it had a 10.3-percent market share, and was ahead of both RIM and ZTE, but now, with a dismal 4-percent, it trails both of them. It’s shown to have sold 7.3 million smartphones this quarter, highlighting the gulf that has opened up between it, Apple and particularly Samsung.

To try to drum up some business in Europe, HTC has today launched Best Deals, a variation on the popular daily deal system, where HTC owners can enter their own deal preferences and, based on location, the app will return relevant offers. There are 12 providers signed up to Best Deals, including iVoucher, Daily Deal, Qype and LivingSocial, but perhaps crucially, not Groupon. The Best Deals app looks to be part of HTC Sense, is compatible with the One X, One S, One X+, the 8X and 8S, and will be available in the UK, Italy, Germany, France and Spain in November.

Nokia leaves the top five for the first time

Finally, we come to Nokia, a company absent from IDC’s top five smartphone companies for the first time since it first began keeping records in 2004. It does still appear in the overall list of general phone manufacturers though, and in second position. It has shipped a massive 82 million phones during the third quarter, down from the 106 million it shipped during the same period last year, and it retains an 18.7-percent market share.

Samsung again tops this list, with a 23-percent market share and a grand total of 105.4 million phones leaving its warehouse.

There’s no sign of the global smartphone market slowing down either, as the 179 million smartphones sold this summer is 45.3-percent more than this time last year.