This time last year Nokia owned more than half of the market for smartphone sales, however today it finds itself staring at a huge slump and glumly wondering why. To find the answer it need look no further than the iPhone.

The Finnish company still leads the smartphone pack, with 38.9 per cent of global sales in the most recent quarter, but Apple's handset has taken a bite out of that huge lead to stand at 17.3 per cent.

New model matters

Just a year ago, the iPhone had only 3.6 per cent of the market, so it's clear where the sales have come from after the introduction of the more appealing 3G model this summer.

One analyst commented: "It was expected that Apple would figure among the smartphone leaders this quarter, with that huge initial new product shipment, it was just a question of how high up it would be – and this is impressive."

Whither MS?

Also doing well was RIM's BlackBerry range of phones, resulting in a year-on-year quarterly rise from 10.6 per cent to 15.2 per cent. Microsoft and its Windows Mobile platform, however, are now firmly among the also-rans.