While global smartphone shipments declined sharply in early 2020 due to the coronavirus-led pandemic, the smartphone market slowly picked up pace again over the past year. Now, according to a report IDC (International Data Corporation), the global smartphone shipments grew more than 25% during the first quarter of 2021. The total number of smartphones shipped by all providers during the quarter amounted to around 346 million units.
“The recovery is progressing faster than we expected, clearly demonstrating a healthy appetite for smartphones globally. But amid this phenomenal growth, we must remember that we are comparing with one of the worst quarters in the history of smartphones, 1Q20, the beginning of the pandemic when most of the supply chain was stopped and China was completely blocked up “. stated Nabila Popal, research director for IDC’s Worldwide Mobile Device Trackers.
According to the IDC report, the accelerated growth in smartphone shipments is the result of strong growth in markets such as China and the Asia / Pacific region (excluding China and Japan). Two of the largest smartphone markets saw growth of 30% and 28% respectively, accounting for half of all global shipments, which is around 173 million units.
Top 5 Global Smartphone Makers
Also, when the market rebounded from demand, supply, and manufacturing problems caused by the ongoing pandemic, it shook up the competitive scene a bit. For starters, Huawei is finally out of the top 5 manufacturers on the global smartphone shipping chart (pictured below) due to its controversies with the US government.
This paved the way for other smartphone makers, mainly Chinese brands like Xiaomi, Oppo, and Vivo, to move up the list. These companies grew 14.1%, 10.8% and 10.1% respectively to acquire positions 3, 4 and 5 in the global table of shipments of smartphones.
According to the report, the low-end and mid-range segment was also dominated by the three previous smartphone brands, as the high-end market share was acquired by tech giants such as Apple and Samsung. In fact, Apple recently reported that it made a whopping $ 89.6 billion in revenue during its second quarter of 2021.
Meanwhile, Samsung is back in the top spot, shipping more than 75.3 million devices during the quarter, gaining a 21.8% market share. While Samsung’s growth was fueled by the Galaxy S21 series, the iPhone 12 series did the same for the Cupertino giant with around 55.1 million units shipped. This led Apple to gain up to 16% of the market share.
Moving forward, IDC VP of Worldwide Mobile Device Trackers Ryan Reith says that many smartphone companies are aiming to capture the market share left by LG. With the company exiting the smartphone industry recently, Reith says that “It’s safe to assume that 6-10 brands are considering this sharing opportunity.”
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