Apple boosts Japanese market share

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AppleStore REUTERS Customers visit the Apple Store in New York City's Grand Central Station.

Tokyo - Apple boosted its share of the Japan mobile-phone market to more than a third after the country’s largest wireless carrier started selling the iPhone.

Apple boosted iPhone shipments in Japan to 36.6 percent of the market in the year ended March, up from 25.5 percent a year earlier, according to Tokyo-based MM Research Institute Ltd.

The Cupertino, California-based smartphone maker shipped 14.43 million phones in Japan the past fiscal year, the researcher said.

Apple, which struck a deal in January with China Mobile to sell iPhones in the world’s largest market, is trying to recapture customers from Samsung Electronics, which boosted global market share the last four years, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

NTT Docomo, Japan’s largest wireless carrier by subscribers, began offering iPhones in September as it seeks to stem losses to competitors including SoftBank Corp.

Total Japan mobile-phone shipments will decrease 4.3 percent to 37.7 million units for year starting April, according to MM Research Institute.

After Apple, Sharp Corp. shipped 5.14 million mobile phones for 13 percent share, and Sony delivered 4.84 million handsets for a 12.3 percent share of the Japan market, according to the researcher.

Samsung was No. 6 with a 5.7 percent share, the researcher said. - Bloomberg News

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