More smartphones were shipped to China between July and September than to any other country in the world, including the US, a new study has revealed.

Some 24 million smartphones were shipped to the Asian country in the third quarter of 2011, compared to a figure of 23 million for the US, Strategy Analytics discovered.

It marks the first time China has outperformed the US in the smartphone market and the research firm said the nation's growth was largely down to "a wave of low-cost Android models from local Chinese brands".

It also emerged that smartphone shipments to China went up by 58 percent sequentially during the third quarter of this year, while shipments to the US dropped by seven percent.

With nearly 952 million handset users and counting, China is currently the globe's largest mobile phone market.

Commenting on the figures, Neil Mawston, Strategy Analytics executive director, said: "China is now at the forefront of the worldwide mobile computing boom. China has become a large and growing smartphone market that no hardware vendor, component maker or content developer can afford to ignore."

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