In a statement, the firm said January 2022 saw 5G-capable devices reach 51% of the total, with North America and Western Europe being the geographical areas which drove this result.
However, the highest percentage was recorded in China, with 84% of smartphone sales being 5G devices.
This was attributed to Chinese telecommunications operators, who have been pushing for 5G, and also the willingness of OEMs to release competitively priced 5G devices to market.
In North America, Counterpoint's statistics showed 73% of the smartphones sold could handle 5G while the figure was even higher for Western Europe at 76%. Apple is the dominant brand in both these regions, with a sales share of 50% and 30% respectively and the switch to 5G with the iPhone 12 marked a turning point.
"These regions are expected to continue contributing substantially to 5G sales globally, as even without offering competitive specs, there is an immense and ongoing demand for a 5G upgrade within the iOS user base," Counterpoint analyst Karn Chauhan said.
"This demand is also fuelled by iPhone users who are ready for new devices after years of holding onto their older iPhones. For many, holding periods are nearing four years, the average replacement cycle for iPhones."
On the Android front, Chauhan said affordable SoCs from both MediaTek and Qualcomm had resulted in lower prices; these SoCs had been offered in the mid-to-high range and were now trickling down to the lower range. The last-named range (US$150 (A$205.8) to US$250) made up 20% of 5G device sales in January.