Microsoft’s Windows Phone jumped to the third place in terms of global smartphone shipments, taking over from BlackBerry in the first quarter of the year, according to an IDC report on Thursday.

While Android and iOS smartphone sales globally combined to provide 92.3 percent of smartphone shipments, it was noted that Windows crept past BlackBerry in the same. Windows Phone showed the largest shipment increase among the leading operating systems by increasing to more than twice its size from a year ago.

This was caused primarily by Nokia, which helped account for 79 percent of all Windows Phone shipments during the quarter. Ever since Nokia began shipping Windows Phone devices, the company has shipped a total of 20.3 million units and also tapped into multiple market segments globally. This increase helped Windows account for 3.2 percent of the total market share in the first quarter of 2013

Windows Phone: The new global number 3

Windows Phone: The new global number 3 (photo courtesy: ijailbreaknow)

In the same time frame, BlackBerry saw its shipments fall to 6.3 million units in the first quarter, which is a drop from last year where they shipped in 9.7 million units for sale. This registered as a drop from the 6.4 percent market share the company held last year, to a market share of 2.9 in this quarter.

In an overall scheme though, it is obvious that the Android and iOS operating systems are still the clear market leaders, and while most vendors are selling Windows Phones, they are doing so as an alternative to their signature Android devices. In terms of shipments, Android phones saw 162.1 million phones being shipped — a clear up from the 90.3 million units shipped out in the previous year’s quarter. Android's market share also increased from 59.1 per cent to 75 percent.

Global smartphone market share of the first quarter of 2013

Global smartphone market share in the first quarter of 2013

Apple also upped its game by shipping out 37.4 million iPhones in the first quarter, compared to the 35.1 million units shipped in the previous year’s quarter. Its market share was left reduced this year, sliding down from 23 percent to a 17.3 percent slice in the global market.

That being said, the smartphone market is extremely volatile and IDC analysts have observed a turnabout in the other platforms available, as there is a demand for alternatives. While Windows Phone has Nokia backing it up, the BlackBerry 10 saw one million units being shipped in the first quarter where it available in the market.  

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