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Apple's iPhones Help Company Beat Samsung In Global Smartphone Shipments

Apple's iPhones Help Company Beat Samsung In Global Smartphone Shipments

Apple's iPhones Help Company Beat Samsung In Global Smartphone Shipments

The Korean giant shipped 74.1 million units in 4Q17, down 4.4% compared to the 77.5 million units from a year ago.

IDC through its Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker that a total of 403.5 million smartphone units were shipped during the fourth quarter, resulting in a 6.3 percent decline compared to 430.7 million units shipped in the same quarter of 2016. The trend was very visible in developed markets such as China and the United States, where consumers did not rush to upgrade their devices to the newer generation of higher-priced flagship phones.

The Cupertino, California-based tech giant topped the charts with iPhone shipments of 77.3 million units, although this was a year-over-year decline of 1.3 percent.

IDC's full report can be viewed here.

"Many high-profile companies offered their widest product portfolio ever in hopes of capturing a greater audience. Meanwhile, brands outside the top 5 struggled to maintain momentum as value brands such as Honor, Vivo, Xiaomi, and OPPO offered incredible competition at the low end, and brands like Apple, Samsung, and Huawei maintained their stronghold on the high end". Samsung led the smartphone market by volume with a market share of 21% in calendar year 2017.

ZTE, with 3 percent market share in the last quarter, posted a 42.5 percent year-over-year decline in shipments, falling to 10.6 million units in the fourth quarter of 2017. Apple continues to prove that having numerous models at various price points works well.

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In the whole of 2017, 1.472 billion smartphones were shipped, down by less than one percent on the 1.473 billion devices shipped in 2016, but still the first annual drop since the market began its rapid rise five years ago. Strategy Analytics, which pegs the shipments at 29.5 million, noted that its quarterly growth is unmoved from a year ago. It sold 77.3 million iPhones and 13.2 million iPads in this period. iPhones and iPads accounted for $67.8 billion of the $88.3 billion revenue this past quarter. Moreover, the launch, which at in Barcelona later this month, may even help the company win over both new and current customers this year.

Huawei stayed in third position in Q4, despite intensified competition from Chinese players such as Oppo and Vivo. Ironically, it managed to beat Samsung in this game even as it saw a 1.3% decline in the year-over-year numbers.

Xiaomi rode strong sales in home market China, and India, where it surpassed Samsung as the leading smartphone brand in 2017. It doubled its share to 7 percent from 3.3 by focusing on growth outside of China, according to IDC - India and Russian Federation are its two largest markets, and it's dramatically expanded the number of its brick-and-mortar Mi Stores and Mi Service Centers.

ZTE faced 42.5 percent decline in shipments to 10.6 million units for 3 percent market share. Huawei has been expanding its number of Mi Stores and Mi Service Centers, also in Indonesia. In India, Xiaomi also launched Redmi Y-series in India and roped in Bollywood celebrity Katrina Kaif to endorse the selfie-centric smartphone series as its first product endorser. One would expect Samsung to make more money from smartphones than Apple since it sells a lot more of them but that's not how this works. The brand continued to expand its retail presence by adding more preferred partners, launching new Mi stores, and partnering with large format retail stores.

Xiaomi managed to double its share to 7% from 3.3% during the holiday quarter past year. For the full year, the company was ahead of Xiaomi, shipping 111.8 million phones from 99.8 million the year earlier, and with its market going higher to 7.6 percent from 6.8 percent. Ltd (SSNLF), from gaining market share. Xiaomi impressed the most during the quarter, bagging the fourth spot.

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