IDC: Samsung and Apple ship almost half of all smartphones, but Korean manufacturer maintains lead

IDC Apple and Samsung ship almost half of all smartphones, jockey for first and second place

IDC's latest figures offer some predictable reading. More phones are being sold than ever before; 406 million units were sold in Q2, against 401.8 million in the same period last year -- with a 42 percent increase in smartphone sales. The winners? Perennial court antagonists, Samsung and Apple, with the duo doubling their combined market share over the last two years. Samsung maintains its lead, reaching over 50 million phones sold -- and a new quarterly sales record -- while Apple saw a quarter-over-quarter decline, as buyers presumably wait for Cupertino's latest iteration, or go elsewhere. Nokia, meanwhile, had another "transitional" quarter, with sales of both Symbian and MeeGo devices shrinking, although its Windows Phones proved stronger. According to IDC's figures, Nokia and Microsoft's team-up handset sales have doubled since last quarter. HTC misses out on a top three spot, but its fortunes appear to have improved over the last two quarters, with the IDC pointing the finger at a more streamlined product range from the Taiwan manufacturer. ZTE continues to nip at its heels, reaching the top five thanks to strong entry-level smartphone sales in China, while continuing to inch onto US shores. If you're looking for a full breakdown of all phones sold, dumb and otherwise, read up at the source below.