Samsung overtakes Apple as smartphone leader, IDC says

Samsung Electronics has overtaken Apple as the top smartphone provider, while Chinese companies took a bigger slice of the global market, according to research firm International Data Corporation.

Jiahui Huang (with inputs from The Wall Street Journal)
First Published15 Apr 2024
Global shipments of Apple smartphones fell 9.6% on year to 50.1 million units in the first quarter, while Samsung’s shipments fell 0.7% to 60.1 million units, making it the number one seller of smartphones worldwide. Photo: AFP
Global shipments of Apple smartphones fell 9.6% on year to 50.1 million units in the first quarter, while Samsung’s shipments fell 0.7% to 60.1 million units, making it the number one seller of smartphones worldwide. Photo: AFP

Samsung Electronics has overtaken Apple as the top smartphone provider in the first quarter, while Chinese companies took a bigger slice of the global market, according to preliminary data from research firm International Data Corporation.

Global shipments of Apple smartphones fell 9.6% on year to 50.1 million units in the quarter, IDC said late Sunday in its quarterly tracking of smartphone shipments. Samsung’s shipments fell 0.7% to 60.1 million units, making it the number one seller of smartphones worldwide.

Total smartphone shipments expanded for the third straight quarter, rising 7.8% on year to 289.4 million units, IDC said. Apple’s market share fell to 17.3% from 20.7% a year ago, while Samsung’s fell to 20.8% from 22.5% amid rising sales of Chinese companies Xiaomi and Transsion.

Xiaomi, the third largest smartphone shipper in the quarter, saw sales rise almost 34% on year to 40.8 million units, while Transsion shipments jumped 85% to 28.5 million. Oppo overtook Vivo to claim the fifth spot in the first quarter.

IDC said overall growth showed that the smartphone market’s recovery “is well underway” despite challenging macroeconomic conditions, and highlighted a trend of higher prices as consumers opt for more expensive smartphones knowing they will hold on to their devices longer.

Apple’s slip in rankings comes after it claimed the top spot in global shipments in the fourth quarter of 2023, when it was helped by the rising popularity of premium devices and the company’s aggressive trade-in offers and interest-free financing plans.

Write to Jiahui Huang at Jiahui.Huang@wsj.com

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