Global smartphone shipments stood at over 1 billion units for first time in 2013, surging 38.4 per cent from the previous year to 1.004 billion units, according to research firm IDC.
The firm said smartphones made up 55.1 per cent of all mobile phone shipments last year from a little more than two-fifths in 2012.
Samsung's market share rose one percentage point year-on-year to 31.3 per cent, which allowed it to keep its place as the world's biggest smartphone vendor, while second-place Apple's market share dipped from 18.7 per cent to 15.3 per cent, IDC said.
Huawei, LG and Lenovo were placed third-, fourth- and fifth, each taking a market share of a little less than 5 per cent in 2013.
According to Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, smartphones accounted for a little over half of all mobile phone sales last year, a rise of over 40 per cent of all mobile phone sales they accounted for in 2012.
The last three months of 2013 saw, vendors ship a total of 284 million smartphones around the world, up by a fifth as against the same period last year.
Including smartphones, a total of 1.821 billion mobile phones were sold around the world last year, which was up 5 per cent on the previous year.
Though Samsung continued to be the clear leader in the smartphone market last year, even as demand continued to be strong for its Galaxy S III, S4, and Note models, the company saw its market share slip in the last three months of the year, as against the previous quarter.
The last quarter saw Apple sell record numbers of its iPhones during the last quarter, after it added two new models with wider availability around the world.
The company, however, still recorded the lowest year-on-year increase in sale volume of all the leading vendors, IDC said.
Meanwhile, Juniper Research has disputed IDC's 1 billion smartphone sales figure, estimating 980 million smartphones were shipped in 2013, representing a growth 39 per cent as compared to the previous year.
According to Juniper, smartphone shipments exceeded 280 million in the final three months of 2013.