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Samsung, Apple and Nokia are the world’s three largest mobile phone makers, but Samsung and Apple alone are responsible for a stunning 46.5% of all smartphone sales around the globe. The two firms were followed by RIM and HTC.

The news is from a report released by research firm Gartner on Wednesday, which found that Samsung – the world’s largest smartphone seller – sold 97.6 million mobile phone units, which includes feature phones and smartphones, during the third quarter of this year, followed by Nokia with 82.3 million units sold and Apple with 23.5 million units. Samsung’s mobile market share jumped from 18.7% during the third quarter of last year to 22.9% during the third quarter of 2012. Nokia’s share fell 3.7 percentage points to a 19.2% share and Apple’s grip on the market jumped from 3.9% to a 5.5% share.

Gartner said low cost phones from Nokia and Samsung helped both firms solidify spots in the top 3 phone makers. Nokia has struggled on a global scale with its smartphones, but is trying to make a comeback in countries such as the United States with the introduction of several new Windows Phone 8 handsets.

Android has the lion’s share of the smartphone OS market, with a 72.4% grip, up from 52.5% last year. iOS is at 13.9%, down from 15% last year, and RIM’s BlackBerry OS is down to 5.3% from 11% last year.

[via AppleInsider, Gartner]