According to the latest numbers from the market researchers at Gartner, Apple surpassed Samsung to become the global leader in smartphone sales during the fourth quarter of 2014. The margin wasn't very wide: Apple sold 75 million devices, while Samsung sold 73 million. And for the entire year, Samsung sold nearly twice as many phones as Apple. However, the quarterly numbers are a big change from 2013, when Samsung sold 83 million devices to Apple's 50 million.
Other stats of interest to the mobile development industry from the report included the following:
- 2014 was the first year that manufacturers sold more than 1 billion smartphones, 1.2 billion in all.
- China's Xiaomi tripled its smartphone sales between 2013 and 2014.
- 80 percent of mobile devices sold worldwide in 2014 ran Android.
- During the fourth quarter, Apple sales climbed 88 percent in the U.S. and 56 percent in China.