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AT&T (s t) posted its fourth quarter results for 2011 on Thursday and highlighted smartphone sales in particular, which reached a record high of 9.4 million devices, beating the standing company record by 50 percent. Apple (s aapl) should be very happy with those results, too, since 7.6 million, or 80.9 percent, of those smartphones were iPhones.
Both Android (s goog) and iPhone devices had best-ever quarters, according to AT&T, but the launch of the 4S clearly helped Apple’s push ahead. In fact, AT&T’s iPhone sales alone during the quarter represent a higher number than AT&T’s previous quarterly record of 6.1 million for total combined smartphone sales across all types of devices.
AT&T attributes the success of the iPhone on its network to its faster data network, since it is the only U.S. carrier that offers HSPA+ speeds for the iPhone 4S. It definitely did post more sales than Verizon, which reported earlier that it sold 4.2 million iPhones during its fourth quarter. Whatever the reason, the success of the device on AT&T’s network definitely contributed significantly to Apple’s total of 37 million iPhones during its most recent quarter.