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Apple tops Samsung as world's biggest smartphone company

Apple is said to have sold more than 234 million phones in 2017, is deemed "the biggest winner" by IDC

By Web Desk
January 17, 2024
Front views of Apple and Samsung offices. — AFP/File
Front views of Apple and Samsung offices. — AFP/File

Apple has surpassed Samsung to take the lead in the global smartphone market for the first time in a 12-year period by making a record of selling more smartphones.

The International Data Corporation (IDC) reports that last year, the phone behemoth based in America accounted for over one-fifth of all phones shipped according to BBC.

With Xiaomi, OPPO, and Transsion, three Chinese phone manufacturers, trailing Samsung, with 19.4% of the market.

Sales of smartphones have decreased because so many people upgraded during the outbreak.

Nearly 1.2 billion smartphones were sold last year, according to IDC, a decrease of more than 3% from the year before. Due to the economic downturn and rising loan rates, many consumers have tightened their purse strings, resulting in the lowest amount sold in a decade. Experts anticipate that this year will see a market recovery.

Nevertheless, Apple, which sold more than 234 million phones in 2017, was deemed "the biggest winner" by the IDC.

"Not only is Apple the only player in the Top 3 to show positive growth annually, but also bags the number 1 spot annually for the first time ever," said the IDC's Nabila Popal.

"All this despite facing increased regulatory challenges and renewed competition from Huawei in China, its largest market."

After being prohibited from purchasing chips manufactured with US technology due to allegations that the corporation poses a national security danger to the US government, Huawei has recently made progress in producing its own processors.

Interest-free financing options and offers to trade in outdated models are also boosting demand for high-end gadgets like Apple.

This is bad news for Samsung, which was the leading manufacturer of memory chips, cellphones, and televisions worldwide up until this point.

The behemoth of South Korean electronics recently issued a warning, stating that the sluggish worldwide demand for consumer electronics will cause its revenues to decline faster than anticipated.

Additionally, it has competition from less expensive Android devices like Xiaomi and Transsion, which are becoming more popular in emerging economies and among users who are price-conscious.

According to IDC, there is a "very interesting time" ahead for the smartphone industry, as more Android providers enter the market and consumers prioritise foldable phones with AI capabilities.