Vendors shipped 281.5 million smartphones worldwide in Q1 2014, up 28.6 per cent from the same period last year.
Although sales were down slightly (2.8 per cent) from Q4 2013, this is an expected retrenchment from the holiday quarter shipment volumes.
"The small difference between the two quarters points to sustained strong demand, driven by emerging markets, low-cost devices, and the proliferation of 4G networks,” explained Ramon Llamas, research manager with IDC's Mobile Phone team.
“If this is how we start the year, then we can look forward to another record-breaking quarter at the end of the year."
Melissa Chau, senior research manager with IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker adds: “The face of the smartphone market is changing rapidly to reflect the rise of its largest market, China, where a record 40 per cent of the smartphones shipped worldwide in 1Q14 were bound to Chinese consumers.”
IDC says it expects total global smartphone shipments to reach 1.2 billion in 2014.
Samsung was once again the worldwide leader in the smartphone market in Q1, shipping more devices than the next four vendors combined.
This hasn’t stopped other vendor’s plans for new smartphone launches this year though.
LG is planning to launch the G3 smartphone which is rumoured to come with a 2K display.
Amazon’s first smartphone is planned for a June launch. Rumoured specs include a 3D user interface, a 12MP front camera and a 13MP rear camera.
Motorola has also just sent out invites for the launch of a new smartphone on May 13th in London. The handset is tipped to be the Moto E, which is said to feature a 4.3-inch display, 5MP rear camera, 1.2GHz dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM, 4GB of internal memory, 1900mAh battery and Android 4.4 KitKat.