Samsung Retained the Top Spot for Most Phones Sold During a Period Which Saw a Decline in Handset Shipments
The American research and advisory firm Gartner recently published the global smartphone sales number for the fourth quarter of 2017. According to the report, around 408 million smartphones were sold in Q4 2017, but as impressive as these numbers are, they reveal a decline of 5.6 percent from Q4 2016. The company said that this is the first year-to-year decline since it started tracking the smartphone market back in 2004.
Apple Closely Behind Samsung in the Global Smartphone Market Share
With a market share of 18.2 percent, Samsung stayed at the top with the most smartphone sales, despite the fact that there was a 3.6 percent reduction in the unit sales. Apple took the second spot, with a 17.9 percent market share. Huawei, Xiaomi, and OPPO took the next three spots. In fact, Huawei and Xiaomi were the only manufacturers from the top five which saw a growth in Q4 2017. Xiaomi performed the best in the last quarter, with a 79 percent increase in sales compared to Q4 2016.
Gartner says that the decline in sales is due to lack of low cost, quality smartphones and the users’ preference for buying quality feature phones. The report also pointed out that users prefer to buy quality models and keep them for longer, bringing down that sales figures.
Gartner also published global smartphones sales figures for the whole year, highlighting subtle gains for Samsung. The market share of Samsung increased from 20.5 percent in 2016 to 20.9 percent in 2017. This helped Samsung remain at the top of the food chain. When the sales figures for the entire year were considered, Xiaomi didn’t qualify for the top five manufacturers list. This is in line with other reports that showed that Xiaomi made significant gains in the second half of 2017.
Although sales reports like these give us a better insight, they are not always indisputable. A lot of time such reports are based on incomplete and unofficial sources of information to calculate the figures. This can make the reports of different market research firms contradictory. For instance, while Gartner reports that Samsung took the top spot in the last quarter of 2017, IDC reported that Apple is at the top as well, so we advise you to take these reports with a grain of salt.