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Tech News & Podcast | Africa

Samsung Reclaims the Top Spot as Apple iPhone Shipments Decline by 10%

Apple’s global iPhone shipments declined nearly 10% in Q1 2024, under pressure from robust growth in shipments by Chinese rivals Xiaomi and Transsion, marking a significant shakeup in the smartphone market.

Apple’s Dominance Wanes Amidst Shifting Tides

After ceding its top spot to Apple last year, Samsung reclaimed its throne in Q1 2024 with a 20.8% market share, shipping almost the same number of units as the previous year at 60.1 million. Meanwhile, Apple’s market share slid from 20.7% to 17.3% compared to the same period last year, signaling a reversal of fortune for the tech giant.

In the face of Huawei’s resurgence in China and notable gains from Xiaomi, Transsion, OPPO/OnePlus, and vivo, both Apple and Samsung are expected to seek new avenues for expansion and diversification, according to Ryan Reith, group vice president at IDC Worldwide Mobility and Consumer Device Trackers.

Xiaomi saw a remarkable 33.8% increase in shipments, totaling 40.8 million units, while Transsion experienced an astounding 84.9% surge to reach 28.5 million units in the first quarter. Transsion, the owner of Tecno, Itel, and Infinix brands, stealthily ascended to become the world’s fifth-largest smartphone manufacturer, reports multiple sources.

In terms of market share, Xiaomi, Transsion, and Oppo secured the third, fourth, and fifth positions respectively, with shares of 14.1%, 9.9%, and 8.7%, based on first-quarter shipments as per the IDC report.

Nabila Popal, research director with IDC’s Worldwide Tracker team, notes Xiaomi’s resurgence after facing significant declines in recent years and Transsion’s steady rise in the top 5 with aggressive international market expansion.

However, Chinese smartphone giant Oppo experienced an 8.5% decline in shipments, totaling 25.2 million units in the first quarter, reflecting the complex dynamics of the market.

Huawei and its spinoff, Honor, though absent from the top five list, were the top-performing smartphone brands in the initial weeks of 2024, according to Counterpoint Research, further illustrating the fierce competition in the industry.

Apple’s challenges in China, particularly against Huawei’s resurging consumer business fueled by the Mate 60 smartphone launch, underscore the intensifying rivalry among smartphone manufacturers.

Despite macroeconomic challenges, the smartphone market demonstrated resilience, with total first-quarter shipments climbing 7.8% year over year to 289.4 million units, marking the third consecutive quarter of growth, according to IDC, signaling a promising recovery underway.

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