Global smartphone sales slip by 5.7% in Q3 2020

The bad news: Smartphone sales in the third quarter of 2020 were worse than Q3 2019. 

The good news: But smartphone sales were better than Q2 of this year. 

According to a report by research and advisory company Gartner, the global smartphone sales declined by 5.7% in the third quarter of 2020 compared to the same period in 2019. The global smartphone sale stood at 366 million units in the past quarter.

Overall global mobile phone sales to end users totaled 401 million units, a decline of 8.7% year-over-year.

However, after two consecutive quarters of a decline of 20%, quarterly smartphone sales have started to show signs of recovery sequentially. 

“Consumers are limiting their discretionary spend even as some lockdown conditions have started to improve,” said Anshul Gupta, senior research director at Gartner. “Global smartphone sales experienced moderate growth from the second quarter of 2020 to the third quarter. This was due to pent-up demand from previous quarters.”

Samsung tops; Xiaomi gets past Apple for the first time

As far as individual brands go, Samsung still tops the table. Huawei surprisingly retains its position despite having lost 21.3% of its market share.

Samsung held the No. 1 position with 22% market share. Xiaomi moved ahead of Apple into the No. 3 position for the first time ever with sales of 44.4 million units compared to Apple’s sales of 40.5 million units in the third quarter of 2020.

Samsung and Xiaomi were the only brands in the top five to experience growth in the third quarter. Samsung benefited from its strong positioning amongst Android users and recorded sales of 80.8 million units. Xiaomi grew 34.9% in the third quarter, securing 12.1% market share and moving past Apple into the No. 3 position. Xiaomi gained from Huawei’s loss including strong performance in China.

Table of Global Sale of Smartphones by Brands

Table of Global Sale of Smartphones by Brands (Image credit: Gartner)

Apple held back by delays

Apple sold 40.5 million units in the third quarter of 2020, a decline of 0.6% as compared to 2019.  

According to Annette Zimmermann, research vice president at Gartner. “The slight decrease was mainly due to Apple’s delayed shipment start of its new 2020 iPhone generation, which in previous years would always start mid/end September. This year, the launch event and shipment start began 4 weeks later than usual.”

Fifth position was occupied by Oppo by selling 29,890.4 million units of smartphones, which accounted for an 8.2% market share. It witnessed a decline of 2.3% compared to the same period last year.

Via: Gartner

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