South Korea-based handset makers are likely to take a 50% share of the US market this year, according to Taiwanese market sources quoted by DigiTimes.
Korean vendors such as Samsung Electronics, LG Electronics (LGE), and Pantech are expected to increase their US market share this year due to well-established relationships with US network operators, and their strength in the CDMA market.
Samsung and LGE both increased their US market penetration in 2008, and the two vendors are expected to respectively achieve first and second place for market share in the country during 2009.
Samsung is aiming for 25% market share in 2009, compared to 23.7% in the fourth quarter of last year.
A recent report by Gartner revealed that handset sales in the US grew by only 100,000 during 2008 to 49.1 million units sold, compared to 49.0 million units sold in 2007.
Smartphone sales in the region grew strongly, however, taking a 20% market share.
This rise was driven by the popularity of new models, including the RIM BlackBerry Storm, the 3G iPhone, and the T-Mobile G1.