Samsung Takes Lead Over Apple as Global Smartphone Shipments Decline
Samsung Takes Lead Over Apple as Global Smartphone Shipments Decline

In the first quarter of 2024 (1Q24), the global shipment of smartphones witnessed a 7.8 percent drop compared to the previous year, totaling 289.4 million units, as reported by the International Data Corporation (IDC), in their Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker released on April 15, 2024. This decline resulted in Apple falling behind, while Samsung emerged as the market leader.

Ryan Reith, IDC's group vice president of Worldwide Mobility and Consumer Device Trackers, noted the ongoing recovery in the smartphone market, expressing cautious optimism among leading brands.

Huawei, Xiaomi, Transsion, OPPO/OnePlus, Vivo: The New Contenders

After Apple secured the top spot at the close of 2023, Samsung reclaimed its position as the leading smartphone provider in the first quarter. While IDC foresees both companies maintaining dominance in the high-end market, the resurgence of Huawei in China, coupled with significant progress from Xiaomi, Transsion, OPPO/OnePlus, and Vivo, is likely to encourage diversification and expansion efforts from all OEMs. As the market recovers, IDC predicts larger companies will gain market share while smaller brands may struggle for visibility.

Nabila Popal, research director at IDC's Worldwide Tracker team, remarked on the changing landscape of the smartphone market, highlighting the growth in value and average selling prices (ASPs) as consumers opt for pricier devices with longer lifespans. Popal also noted a power shift among the top five companies, expecting this trend to continue as market players adapt to post-recovery conditions.

Xiaomi's Resurgence

Xiaomi is staging a remarkable comeback after facing significant declines in the past two years. Transsion is solidifying its presence in the top five with aggressive expansion in international markets. Despite both leading players experiencing negative growth in the first quarter, Popal suggests Samsung is in a relatively stronger position compared to recent quarters.

Xiaomi's resurgence in the smartphone market is notable, marking a turnaround from previous years' declines. Meanwhile, Transsion is making strides in securing its position within the top five smartphone brands, particularly through its aggressive expansion efforts in international markets.

Despite experiencing negative growth in the first quarter, both leading players, Apple and Samsung, are navigating the market challenges. However, Samsung appears to be in a comparatively stronger position than in recent quarters, according to Popal's analysis.

As the smartphone market gradually emerges from the upheaval of the past two years, it does so with changes and opportunities. Consumers are increasingly opting for higher-priced devices, anticipating longer usage periods. This shift in consumer behavior, along with the evolving strategies of major players, sets the stage for a dynamic and competitive landscape in the post-recovery era.

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