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Still ahead, Samsung now on shakier ground

TOKYO -- Samsung Electronics maintained the top global market share for five products in a recently released Nikkei ranking for 2014. The South Korean company is ahead of the pack in smartphones, lithium-ion batteries, NAND flash memory, flat-screen TVs and DRAM chips. That is not to say Samsung executives should break out the champagne. The company's heyday appears to have passed: Its share shrank in three of those segments in which the company leads.

     Global smartphone market share in 2014 fell for Samsung by 6.5 percentage points from the previous year to 24.5%. Its dominant position was undermined by the rapid rise of low-cost Chinese manufacturers, including third-ranked Lenovo Group and fourth-place Huawei Technologies.

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