A new report by Strategy Analytics puts China ahead of the US in terms of smartphone shipments in Q3. What's more, while the number of shipments in China grew 58% to 23.9 million units, the numbers in the US fell 7% to 23.3 million units.
Nokia is still holding on to the lion's share of smartphone shipments in China (28.5% or 6.8 million units shipped in Q3) with Samsung coming in second (17.6% of all shipments in Q3 or 4.2 million units).
Cheap, locally-made phones from the likes of ZTE are also gaining popularity quickly as is the iPhone along with other high-end models. Still, the market is oriented more towards the lower-end of the price scale, so the US maintains the lead in revenue from mobile phones despite the lower number of units shipped.
There, the high-enders that rule the market - HTC is on top with 5.6 million units shipped in Q3 of 2011 (that's a 24% share) with Apple following close by with 4.8 million units shipped (20.6%).
Still, with 1.3 billion people, the Chinese market will become more and more important.
Here's some advice that Neil Mawston, Executive Director at Strategy Analytics, offers smartphone makers.
"The United States remains the world's largest smartphone market by revenue, but China has overtaken the United States in terms of volume. China is now at the forefront of the worldwide mobile computing boom. China has become a large and growing smartphone market that no hardware vendor, component maker or content developer can afford to ignore."