Apple now has a 53.3 percent share of the U.S. smartphone market, the largest slice of the pie the iPhone maker has ever had, according to new research from Kantar Worldpanel. The data represents a snapshot of the wireless market over the past 12 weeks.

"Apple has reached a major milestone in the US by passing the 50 percent share mark for the first time, with further gains expected to be made during December," Kantar Worldpanel global consumer insight director Dominic Sunnebo said.

The scene isn't the same on the other side of the pond, however. Android's market share increased from 51.8 percent in 2011 to 61 percent in Europe this year. Samsung has the largest grip in the "big five" countries in Europe, with a 44.3 percent share, followed by Apple with a 25.3 percent share. Kantar said HTC, Nokia and Sony are all in a close race for third place.

"Although Windows sales in the U.S. remain subdued, Nokia is managing to claw back some of its share in Great Britain through keenly priced Lumia 800 and 610 prepay deals," Sunnebo said. "The next period will prove crucial in revealing initial consumer reactions to the Nokia 920 and HTC Windows 8X devices."