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Global Smartphone Units Up 13.5% During Q2, But Android And China Saw Declines

Global Smartphone Units Up 13.5% During Q2, But Android And China Saw Declines

In a press release issued Thursday, Gartner Inc (NYSE: IT) analysts Janessa Rivera and Rob van der Meulen assured that, in the second quarter of 2015, worldwide smartphone sales grew at the slowest rate since 2013. Global sales to end-users reached almost 330 million units, up 13.5 percent year-over-year.

Anshul Gupta, research director at Gartner, explained, “While demand for lower-cost 3G and 4G smartphones continued to drive growth in emerging markets, overall smartphone sales remained mixed region by region in the second quarter of 2015.”

Regional Growth Rates

Growth in the fastest-expanding regions (Asia/Pacific, excluding China, Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa) was driven by strong performance from Chinese and local vendors, the experts explained. On the other hand, and even though China is the largest smartphone market with 30 percent of total sales, these dropped year-over-year for the first time ever, recording a 4 percent fall.

"China has reached saturation – its phone market is essentially driven by replacement, with fewer first-time buyers,” Gupta expounded. “Beyond the lower-end phone segment, the appeal of premium smartphones will be key for vendors to attract upgrades and to maintain or grow their market share in China.”

Related Link: Top Smartphone Vendors In Q2; Samsung Falls, Apple Rises In A Record Quarter

SAMSUNG ELECT LTD(F) (OTC: SSNLF) lost market share over the second quarter, while Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) and other vendors like Huawei Technology Co Ltd ( traded on the SHE exchange with ticker 002502), Xiaomi and Lenovo Group Limited (ADR) (OTC: LNVGY) (OTC: LNVGF) continued to gain traction.

Over the second quarter, Samsung’s share fell 4.3 percent, while its unit sales tumbled 5.3 percent. Huawei, on the other hand, saw the highest sales growth (46.3 percent) on the back of robust overseas sales and 4G smartphone sales in China.

iPhone Versus Android

iPhone sales also rose (in both emerging and mature markets) 36 percent, which helped Apple drive its 2.4 percent increase in market share. In China, iPhone sales in China grew 68 percent to 11.9 million units.

Looking at operating systems, Android, the OS from Google Inc (NASDAQ: GOOGL) (NASDAQ: GOOG), witnessed its lowest year-over-year growth rate ever (11 percent) on weak performance in China – especially versus Apple’s iOS. However, its market share now reaches 82.2 percent. Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT)’s mobile OS, for its part, continued to struggle for adoption, even at lower end devices.

"The low barrier to entry into the Android segment will continue to encourage an array of new players, adding to further disruptions coming from Chinese manufacturing and innovative Internet players with new business models that are not reliant on hardware margins," said Gupta. 

Image Credit: Public Domain


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