UAE TRA ranks iPhone 5 as most commonly used smartphone

Dubai: Analysts and retailers are divided over the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority’s (TRA) report on the most popular mobile phone handsets in the UAE as of third quarter.
According to the report, during the period between July 1 and September 30, the iPhone 5 was the most commonly used smartphone in the UAE with 2.8 per cent of the total handsets registered on UAE networks, followed by Samsung S3 with 2.5 per cent, iPhone 4S with 2.3 per cent, iPhone 4 and BlackBerry 9900 (both at 1.8 per cent); Samsung S4 (1.6 per cent); Galaxy S Duos (1.2 per cent); BlackBerry Bold 9790 (1.1 per cent) and BlackBerry Bold 9780 (1 per cent).
According to the TRA’s finding, smartphones had a market share of 46 per cent but according to IDC, smartphones had a market share of 65 per cent in the UAE and feature phones (non-smartphones) had a market share of 35 per cent.
Hamza Saleem, senior telecom analyst at research firm International Data Corporation (IDC) said that Samsung had a market share of 51.7 per cent of the UAE smartphone market share, followed by BlackBerry with 24 per cent, Lenovo with 8.6 per cent, Nokia with 4.8 per cent and Apple with 4.2 per cent as of third quarter.
Specific models
The TRA report indicates that 56.2 per cent of all handsets registered on UAE networks were manufactured by Nokia followed by Samsung (16.4 per cent), BlackBerry (10.2 per cent) and Apple (7.8 per cent); LG (1 per cent); Sony (0.9 per cent); Huawei (0.5 per cent) and HTC (0.6 per cent).
In terms of specific handset models, the Nokia 101/1010 (4.1 per cent) was the most popular mobile handset in UAE in third quarter surpassing the Nokia 1280/1282 which was the most popular in the previous quarter. The Nokia 1280/1282 (3.7 per cent) was the second most popular handset followed by both the Nokia X1 and Nokia E5 (3.0 per cent); iPhone 5 (2.8 per cent); Samsung S III (2.5 per cent); iPhone 4S (2.3 per cent); the iPhone 4 and BlackBerry Bold 9900 (both 1.8 per cent); Samsung S4 (1.6); Galaxy S Duos (1.2 per cent); BlackBerry Bold 9790 (1.1 per cent) and BlackBerry Bold 9780 (1.0 per cent).
“Samsung S4 is selling more than iPhone 5 for us. During Gitex Shopper, we sold more Samsung Galaxy S3 on offer. Samsung as a brand put together sells more than 50 per cent compared to any other handsets. Many of the Nokia models mentioned are not sold in our main outlets,” said Ashish Panjabi, Chief Operating Officer at Jacky’s Electronics.
IDC said that Nokia 1280, X1 and E5 models are already discontinued but 101 is still available in the market.
Among non-smartphones (feature phones), Nokia had a market share of 90.4 per cent in the UAE while Samsung had 3.2 per cent share.
“Nokia feature phones do sell a lot and many people have them as a second phone, so if you want to go into model level situation, then what TRA is saying might also be true in many cases as they have the mobiles on the network and for them to count it is not difficult. But the report has to be clarified on how TRA calculates the statistics,” Saleem said.
TRA had not responded to Gulf News’ queries at the time of going to the press.
According to Nadeem Khanzadah, head of retail at Jumbo Electronics, Nokia can no way be the top selling handset maker in the UAE as its market share has been falling very significantly every quarter.
“There was a period when illegal VoIP cards were used by consumers, that time Nokia E5 and Nokia X1 (both VoIP enabled) were sold, but now as both the telecom operators are offering good value for money, I don’t think we even have these models at our stores,” he said.
Samsung S4 was the best-selling smartphone for Jumbo, followed by S3 and BlackBerry.
According industry sources, Samsung S4 was the best-selling smartphone, followed by Samsung S3 and Samsung Note 2.