Despite shipping over 40 million units of the Galaxy S4 last year, Samsung’s 5-inch handset still isn’t its most-used smartphone—at least not here in North America. A new study from the Chitika ad network reveals that the Galaxy S III, which launched back in May 2012, is still the most popular model, beating out the S4 by a significant margin.
Chitika’s latest study is based on the millions of mobile ad impressions made by Samsung devices throughout December 2013, which allowed the company to break down which smartphones and tablets are getting the most use in North America. Leading the pack is the Galaxy S III with 33.9 percent, followed by the Galaxy S4 (23.8 percent) and the S II (8.4 percent). Meanwhile, the Galaxy Note family of phablets collectively counted for just 13.3 percent of all ad impressions.
The news that most Samsung phone owners are still holding onto the Galaxy S III might help explain why some claimed Galaxy S4 sales were actually dissapointing. It also highlights just how important the upcoming Galaxy S5 will be for the company. With most S III owners in the U.S. likely coming up on the end of a two-year contract, Samsung will need to convince consumers to reinvest in a new Galaxy device while fighting off increasingly sophisticated competition from other Android handset manufacturers like HTC, LG and Motorola.
A second chart also shows how Samsung tablets breakdown based on screen size. While smaller models are growing in popularity, the 10.1-inch tablet is still the most popular with 53.2 percent of all ad impressions. 7-inch models like the Galaxy Tab 3 take up another 40.3 percent, followed by 8-inch tablets (5.2 percent), 8.9-inch tablets (1 percent) and 7.7 tablets (0.4 percent).