Recent figures have suggested that Apple's iPhone is now the most popular mobile phone in the world.

Research compiled by Gartner suggested that the iPhone accounted for 23.8 per cent of all smartphones sold during the fourth quarter of 2011.

The firm stated that 149 million smartphones were sold across the globe during the fourth quarter, meaning that across 2011 as a whole there were 472 million mobile phones sold. The iPhone accounted for 19 per cent of these.

Principal research analyst at Gartner Roberta Cozza said western Europe and North America led most of the smartphone growth for Apple during the fourth quarter of 2011.

"In Western Europe the spike in iPhone sales in the fourth quarter saved the overall smartphone market after two consecutive quarters of slow sales," he added.

The rise of just over three per cent in the number of smartphones sold in 2011 shows that demand for the devices is higher than ever. It was also estimated earlier this month that the number of mobile phones will surge ahead of population figures by the end of this year.

Posted by Simon Thomas

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