Apple’s iOS market in China has grown to 17.3 per cent in the June quarter, a significant increase from the 9.9 per cent share the company had a year ago.

The latest quarterly report from Needham & Company analyst Charlie Wolf on the smartphone industry was issued on Monday, revealing that China is currently leading the smartphone market. Smartphone shipments in the country have grown by a massive 164 per cent over the last year, to 33.1 million units in the June quarter. The US sold 25 million smartphone units in the same quarter, reports Apple Insider.

Data from Gartner suggests that iOS took a 17.3 per cent share in China last quarter, mostly owing to the iPhone’s launch on China Telecom, but the report points out that Apple’s iPhone is not yet available with China Mobile, the largest wireless provider in the world. Apple could change this with its next iPhone, though, some reports have suggested.

The rise in iOS market share still hasn’t pushed the platform much closer to Google’s Android, however. 69.5 per cent of smartphones sold in China during the June quarter were Android, and 11.2 per cent were Nokia.

“The surge in China can be traced in part to the introduction of smartphones at materially lower prices that made them competitive with feature phones,” wrote Wolf in his note on Monday. “A material percentage of these sales were captured by second-tier Chinese manufacturers.”

Downloads from China on Apple’s App Store are also on the rise, at three times more than a year ago, and has the second highest number of iOS app downloads in the world, just behind the US.