Mobile

Apple & Samsung lose smartphone market share

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Image Credit: Kostenko Maxim / Shutterstock

Samsung and Apple are losing ground in an increasingly competitive smartphone market.

While both companies — the world’s top smartphone vendors — shipped more smartphones in Q1 2014 than they did in Q1 2013, they aren’t growing as fast as the global market, according to new research from Strategy Analytics.

It’s not surprising to see Apple’s iPhones lose some market share to cheaper Android handsets. But even though Samsung’s market dip is smaller, it’s a worrying loss of momentum for the Galaxy phone maker — and a clear sign that offerings from competitors Lenovo and Huawei are becoming increasingly attractive to consumers.

Market leader Samsung shipped 89 million smartphones worldwide in Q1 2014 compared to 69.4 million in the same period last year, according to Strategy Analytics. Its global market share now stands at 31.2%, down from 32.4% a year earlier.

Apple, meanwhile, shipped 43.7 million iPhones in Q1 2014, up from last year’s 37.4 million device total over the same period. Its total market share dropped from 17.5% to 15.3%. That drop wasn’t as bad as analysts had feared, however.

Global shipments swelled over 33% year-over-year, from 213.9 million in Q1 2013 to 285 million in Q1 2014. But that figure didn’t actually match last year, when market shipments grew over 39% compared to 2012.

Strategy Analytics believes Apple needs to do more to cater to emerging markets. In other words, the iPhone 5C is not enough.

“Apple remains strong in the premium smartphone segment, but a lack of presence in the entry-level category continues to cost it lost volumes in fast-growing emerging markets such as Latin America,” the research firm noted.

Lenovo and Huawei shipped 13.3 million and 13.4 million smartphones respectively in Q1 2014, each capturing 4.7% of the global market.

If various governments approve Lenovo’s Motorola takeover, that joint company will prove an even greater threat to Apple and Samsung in the later half of the year, said Strategy Analytics.


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