The slow U.S. economy hasn't stymied sales of smartphones. American consumers increasingly snatch up the sophisticated handsets; we doubled our purchases in the first quarter compared with last year, according to data from Gartner. That was enough to nearly match sales in Europe, traditionally a stronger market than North America.
European consumers are driving much of the growth on this side of the Atlantic. New consumer-friendly models such as the Pearl and Curve helped keep BlackBerry No. 1 in this market. The iPhone also helped drive sales, vaulting Apple to second place among smartphone vendors here and third worldwide. Outside America, Nokia continues to dominate the high-end phones and accounts for nearly half of global sales.