Apple, not Samsung, was the top-selling smartphone brand in late 2020


iPhone 12 Pro Max back with neon 1

Credit: David Imel / Android Authority

  • Apple ousted Samsung and Xiaomi to turn into the top-selling telephone brand in This fall 2020.
  • It was the first time Apple had claimed the lead since 2016.
  • The iPhone 12 and Huawei’s decline helped Apple pull forward.

Android now not has the high spot amongst smartphone manufacturers. Gartner analysts have estimated that Apple overtook Samsung to turn into the top-selling telephone maker in the fourth quarter of 2020, claiming 20.8% market share to its rival’s 16.2%. That’s a pointy turnaround from the similar time a yr earlier, when Samsung simply edged out Apple to get 17.3% market share.

phone market share q4 2020 gartner 1

Other high manufacturers fared effectively, nevertheless it was a tough time for the trade as an entire. Xiaomi surged from 8% market share to 11.3% in the area of a yr, however Oppo solely nudged forward barely from 7.5% to eight.9%. And it was one other disastrous quarter for Huawei — the US trade ban reduce its share from 14.Three p.c in late 2019 to simply 8.9% at the finish of 2020.

The general telephone market contracted 5.4% due in no small half to the COVID-19 pandemic prompting many shoppers to restrict their spending.

It’s a big milestone for Apple. This was the first time the telephone maker had topped Gartner’s quarterly market share ranks since fall 2016 and the iPhone 7. Samsung nonetheless led the full-year share with 18.8% versus Apple’s 14.8%, however the lead narrowed significantly.

See additionally: The best Android phones

Apple’s rise was helped by an ideal storm of occasions. The pandemic pushed the iPhone 12 launch from the firm’s normal September timeframe to October, making a gross sales spike that may in any other case have been barely muted. This was additionally Apple’s largest collection of iPhones thus far, with the 12 Mini providing yet one more choice.  Huawei’s fall from grace actually helped Apple’s telephone market share numbers, even when prospects didn’t swap.

The shift in telephone market share was partly a mirrored image of Samsung’s challenges. It confronted fiercer competitors from Chinese manufacturers like Xiaomi, Oppo, and Vivo as they gained affect exterior of their house nation. Low-end and mid-range telephones thrived in the fourth quarter, Gartner mentioned, and Chinese distributors have thrived in these classes in current years.

It’s not sure how most of those manufacturers will fare in 2021. Mass vaccinations and the general pandemic restoration may spark demand as individuals go away house extra usually. The Galaxy S21 may assist Samsung’s fortunes given strong early demand, nevertheless it’s not assured to fare higher general when funds telephones and direct rivals like the Xiaomi Mi 11 pose main threats. It’s protected to presume Huawei will wrestle — it doesn’t have a lot of a future in telephones without its own chips or the Honor brand.


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