iPhone 5 at Apple Store

Strategy Analytics reported earlier today that Apple passed Samsung as the top US mobile phone vendor for the first time ever last quarter. The move was attributed to the company’s big holiday push and strong iPhone 5 sales.

How strong? Well according to the NPD Group, Apple’s latest handset was the top selling smartphone in the final quarter of last year. It accounted for 43% of all iPhone sales, and nearly 2/3 of all post-paid smartphones above $199…

npd iphone 5 chart us

Samsung’s wildly popular Galaxy S III handset took the second spot in the quarter, with the iPhone 4S and iPhone 4 placing third and fourth respectively. And rounding out NPD’s list of top 5 smartphones in Q4 was the Galaxy S II.

There’s a few big takeaways here. For one, it’s clear that Apple and Samsung still control a huge chunk of the US smartphone market. Apple accounts for 39% of the pie, Samsung’s at 30%, and the closest competitor is Motorola, at 7%.

And two, Apple isn’t just selling a ton of iPhone 5s, it’s selling a ton of iPhones period. It’s crazy to think that the iPhone 4—a nearly 3-year old handset—is still one of the top 5 most popular smartphones in the US. Now I know it’s free right now, with contract, but so are dozens of Android phones.

It’s worth noting, after all of this, that Samsung is said to be debuting its new flagship handset later this month, the Galaxy S IV. So between that and the expected post-holiday dip in iPhone sales, this list won’t stay like this for long.