427.8 million mobile phones were sold around the world in the first quarter of this year, with 100.8 million of them being smartphones. That’s according to analyst firm Gartner’s latest figures. Delving into the smartphone stats, it says 36.3 million Android smartphones were sold in Q1 – and note, this is sales to consumers, not shipments – ahead of Symbian (27.6m), iPhone (16.9m), and BlackBerry (13m). Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7 OS only shifted 1.6 million handsets in Q1, although Gartner says that in the longer term, Nokia’s switch to the platform will boost its popularity. Gartner also points out that apps are becoming a key reason for loyalty to the different operating systems. “Every time a user downloads a native app to their smartphone or puts their data into a platform’s cloud service, they are committing to a particular ecosystem and reducing the chances of switching to a new platform,” says Roberta Cozza. “This is a clear advantage for the current stronger ecosystem owners Apple and Google.”

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