Oppo and subsidiaries edge past Apple; Become global number two in May '21

The global smartphones market is poised interestingly. The traditional leaders like Samsung and Apple are under increasing pressure from the Chinese brands, which are aggressively breathing down their neck. Just last week we had a report that said Xiaomi had gone past Apple to be the second-biggest smartphone maker. 

And now another Chinese brand Oppo and its subsidiaries, which comprise OnePlus and Realme too, have captured the second spot in the global smartphone market for May 2021.

According to Counterpoint Research’s May Monthly Market Pulse Report, the 'team' Oppo had a 16% share of unit sales in the month of May, and it narrowly edged out Apple which had 15% share. Xiaomi was not too far behind at 14%.

Oppo is part of BBK Electronics group that also owns Vivo, Realme and OnePlus. But Vivo was not included with the other group brands in this report.

Success attributed to multi-branded strategy

Samsung was the leader of the pack, though the report did not mention its share of the market.

Jene Park, senior analyst at Counterpoint Research was quoted as saying, “Oppo and its subsidiaries’ combined global smartphone sales surpassed Apple and Xiaomi in April and May taking the vendor to second place globally."

He attributed this growth to the combined result of its multi-brand strategy which includes the premium OnePlus and more accessible Realme. 

And in further good news for the brands, Park said “Oppo family may likely be the next dominant brand to come from China since Huawei”.

Oppo and its subsidiaries doing well over the last two months

(Image credit: Counterpoint Research)

Oppo and its subsidiaries, though different companies with different strategies, work as a well-oiled machine in unison. Their overall individual brand strategies complements the group overall.

Oppo concentrates on offline sales of mid-to low-end smartphones.

Realme, for its part, focuses on online sale of lower-tier smartphones. 

OnePlus, which is now merged with Oppo, sets much store by premium smartphones.

"Each brand independently raises brand awareness in their respective areas, and this strategy has shown good results so far," said the report.

All told, leaders like Samsung, Apple and Xiaomi cannot afford to rest on their laurels as the competition is getting intense.

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