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Huawei Sold Almost Twice as Many Smartphones as Apple in Q1

Posted May 1, 2019 | Android | Huawei | iOS | Mobile | Windows


The market researchers at IDC have weighed in on the struggling smartphone market, but one company saw a massive sales boost. Huawei is now closing in on Samsung for the top spot in the industry, and its first-quarter unit sales were almost double those of the distant number three, Apple.

“Huawei is laser-focused on growing its stature in the world of mobile devices, with smartphones being its lead horse,” IDC’s Ryan Reith says. “The overall smartphone market continues to be challenged in almost all areas, yet Huawei was able to grow shipments by 50 percent, not only signifying a clear number two in terms of market share but also closing the gap on the market leader Samsung. This new ranking of Samsung, Huawei, and Apple is very likely what we’ll see when 2019 is all said and done.”

IDC reports that Huawei sold 59.1 million smartphones in the first quarter of 2019. (I’m still waiting on Gartner’s numbers to write up a general overview of the quarter.) This compares to 71.9 million units for Samsung, the current market leader, and 36.4 million units for Apple.

As noted, Huawei’s market share grew by 50 percent in the quarter. But Samsung’s sales declined by 8.1 percent, and Apple feel through the floor, by an incredible 30.2 percent.

A year ago, Huawei’s and Apple’s positions were basically reversed: In the first quarter of 2018, Apple was in second place with 52.2 million units sold and 15.7 percent market share. And Huawei was in third place with 39.3 million units sold and 11.8 percent market share.

What’s interesting about Huawei’s continued rise is that some other China-based smartphone makers, like Xiaomi and Oppo, have run into roadblocks: Each firm experienced year-over-year sales shortfalls, according to IDC, of 10.2 percent and 6, respectively. But another China-based handset maker, Vivo, saw sales rise 24 percent in the quarter.

“Huawei is now within striking distance of Samsung at the top of the global market,” IDC notes. “In China, Huawei continued its positive momentum with a well-rounded portfolio targeting all segments from low to high. Huawei’s high-end models continued to create a strong affiliation for the mid to low-end models, which are supporting the company’s overall shipment performance.”

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