Smartphone Shipments Fall 8% in Q3; Samsung Leads in Market Share as Huawei Surges

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Global smartphone shipments dropped by 8.4% year over year in the third quarter from 393.1 million a year ago to 360 million. Market share leader Samsung posted shipment volume of 72.3 million in the quarter, down 13.3% from 83.4 million shipments in the third quarter of last year.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) gave up its second-place standing in market share even though its share rose from 11.9% a year ago to 13%. China-based Huawei boosted its share from 9.9% last year to 14.4%.

By shipment volume, Huawei’s total jumped 32.5%, from 39.1 million units to 51.8 million units while Apple’s volume rose just 0.4% from 46.7 million units to 46.9 million.

The data were reported Thursday by research firm Strategy Analytics. Regarding Apple, the company commented:

The new iPhone XR, XS, and XS Max range is in healthy demand, but Apple’s relentless focus on price increases [is] capping its overall volume growth.

Strategy Analytics also noted that Samsung is losing share to Huawei, Xiaomi, and other Chineses smartphone makers in the massive Chinese and Indian markets. “Samsung must solve its China and India problems before it is too late,” said Strategy Analytics.

Huawei, which has virtually no footprint in the United States, is “wildly popular” in much of the rest of the world, especially in Asia and Europe. The company is also competing hard against Xiaomi, which last year nearly doubled its market share but was held to just 9% growth in 2018.

Here are the top five vendors listed by third-quarter shipments and including their respective market shares in the quarter:

  • Samsung: 72.3 million units shipped; market share of 20.1%
  • Huawei: 51.8 million units; market share of 14.4%
  • Apple: 46.9 million units; market share of 13%
  • Xiaomi: 33 million units; market share of 9.2%
  • OPPO: 31.2 million units; market share of 8.7%
  • All others: 124.8 million units; market share of 34.7%

Most of Huawei’s and Xiaomi’s volume growth is coming at the expense of the “all others” category that lost 24.3% of its shipment volume year over year and 7.2 points of market share.

Apple, which reported earnings after the bell Thursday, traded down about 6.7% Friday morning at $207.32. The company missed consensus estimates on iPhone shipment volume by 1.3% but the average selling price per unit was 5.7% better than Street estimates. Here’s a take on what Apple’s results indicate from Loup Ventures’ analysts Gene Munster and Will Thompson.

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