China overtook the US as the largest market for smartphones by volume in the third quarter, The Wall Street Journal reported. Deliveries grew 58% from the previous quarter to 24 million units. By contrast, US sales declined 7% to 23 million units. The growth in demand is driven by increased subsidies for high-end phones like Apple’s (AAPL.NASDAQ) iPhone, as well as increased availability of low-cost models running Google’s (GOOG.NSADAQ) Android software. Nokia (NOK.NYSE) maintains the largest market share with 29%, though its share of the global market has more than halved to 14% as the company switches the Microsoft (MSFT.NSADAQ) Windows Phone platform. Samsung Electronics (005930.SEO) is second in the China market with 18%, and Apple plans to release the iPhone through a second carrier next year. China Mobile (CHL.NYSE, 0941.HKG), the world’s largest carrier, has more than 600 million subscribers; China Unicom (CHU.NYSE, 0762.HKG) is at a distant second place with 200 million.