Gartner recently shared some interesting new statistics about the smartphone market and Apple iPhones.

Sales for smartphones worldwide have declined by two percent during the first quarter of 2012. This is the first decline in sales since 2009. Principal analyst for Gartner, Anshul Gupta explained that this decline has occurred because of a slower demand from the Asia/Pacific region. He said, “The first quarter, traditionally the strongest quarter for Asia – which is driven by Chinese New Year, saw a lack of new product launches from leading manufacturers, and users delayed upgrades in the hope of better smartphone deals arriving later in the year.”

Smartphone share chart by Gartner

More research from Gartner indicates that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) (which ranks 3rd place) sold 33.1  million of their iPhones , about 7.9% of the entire market. The company’s shares have also more than doubled since 2011 when the company sold 16.8 million phones, representing a total of 3.9% off all mobile phone sales.

Which two companies topped Apple Inc. (AAPL) during the 1Q 2012? Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (LON:BC94) ranked number one with a total sale of 86,567.6 units and shares of 20.7.  Nokia Corporation (NYSE:NOK) sits pretty at number two with a sale of 83,162.5 units and shares of 19.8.

Other phone makers on the list include ZTE Corporation (SHE:000063) (rank 4) which sold a total of 17,439.3 phones;  LG (rank 5) sold 14,720; Huawei Technology Co Ltd (SHE:002502) (rank 6) sold 10,796.1; Research In Motion Limited (TSE:RIM) (NASDAQ:RIMM) (rank 7) sold 9,939.3; Motorola Mobility Holdings Inc (NYSE:MMI) (rank 8 ) sold 8,368.2, Sony Mobile Communications (rank 9)sold 7,898.4, and HTC Corp (TPE:2498) (rank 10) sold 7,703.4. You can click on this link to see the full chart and how they compare from last year.

Another important thing to note regarding smartphone sales is the popularity of certain operating systems. The two top selling phones iPhone 4s and Samsung Galaxy S II run on iOS and Android platforms respectively. This indicates that the two leading platforms are leading the way to the future of smartphones. The statistics mentioned above provides a little insight to the future of mobile-based technology but that doesn’t mean that the future of these companies is st in stone.