Nokia and Microsoft's gamble on Windows Phone 7 appears to have begun to pay dividends as sales of mobile phones containing the operating system have edged ahead of Symbian in Great Britain.

The Nokia Lumia 800 took 87 per cent of Windows Phone 7 sales over a 12-week period ending February 19th, which represents a two per cent uplift in shares when compared with the same time last year, according to the latest data from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech.

Data from the firm last month showed that over 50 per cent of the UK's population now owns a smartphone, and these figures strengthen the view that this smart mobile phone boom is showing no sign of abating just yet.

Global consumer insight director Dominic Sunnebo said the fact that Windows Phone 7 sales have overtaken Symbian based on one handset is encouraging for Nokia and Microsoft.

"There are strong signs that WP7 Nokia handsets are starting to make an impact on the European smartphone market though US sales, where the Nokia brand is weaker, remain underwhelming," he added.

Posted by Claire Marshall

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