Apple lost more ground in the shrinking smartphone market last quarter, with a sales tracker saying the tech giant was pushed off the top-three seller list by a Chinese rival.
Apple fell to fourth place in global smartphone sales, shipping 35.3 million iPhones in the second quarter compared to the 36.2 million units shipped by Oppo, according to a report from IHS Markit this week.
South Korean consumer electronics titan Samsung remained in first place with 23 percent of the market, having shipped 75.1 million smartphones, China’s Huawei shipped 58.7 million smartphones to claim 18 percent of the market, IHS Markit calculated.
“Apple continues to face challenges in terms of unit shipments -- a trend that is unlikely to be fixed soon,” IHS smartphone research and analysis director Jusy Hong said in an online post.
While California-based Apple has been aggressively promoting iPhones, current-generation smartphones have “super-premium” prices while models a few years old are still costly compared to bargain Android-powered handsets, the analyst reasoned.
Other smartphone market trackers such as Counterpoint Research and International Data Corporation concluded that while iPhone shipments sank in the second quarter, Apple remained in third place what it came to global shipments.
Huawei, meanwhile, saw smartphone shipments rise despite the overall market contracting and US-China trade tensions, market trackers reported.
- Chinese rivals rising - Huawei -- considered the world leader in superfast fifth-generation, or 5G, equipment and the world’s number two smartphone producer -- has been blacklisted by US President Donald Trump amid suspicions it provides a backdoor for Chinese intelligence services. The company denies those charges.
“The effect of the ban did not translate into falling shipments during this quarter, which will not be the case in the future,” Counterpoint associate research director Tarun Pathak said in the firm’s market report.
“In the coming quarters, Huawei is likely to be aggressive in its home market and register some growth there, but it will not be enough to offset for the decline in its overseas shipments.”
The combined global smartphone market share of Chinese firms Huawei, Oppo, Vivo, Xiaomi and Realme reached a new high of 42 percent in the second quarter, according to Counterpoint.