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Samsung, Apple retain lead in mobile handset market

Posted: 30 Jul 2013 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:smartphone? handset shipment? Galaxy S4? iPhone?

ABI Research has revealed that for the second calendar quarter in a row, smartphone shipments represented more than half (52 per cent) of the world's mobile phone shipments. Led by Samsung, an estimated 408 million handsets and 214 million smartphones were shipped in 2Q13. Feature phone shipments dropped 20 per cent YoY to 195 million units as low-cost manufacturers continue to claw their way up-market with increased device specifications, indicated the market analytics firm.

Due to typical seasonality gains at mid-year, handset shipments grew 0.5 per cent sequentially and more than seven per cent YoY. Smartphone shipments maintained a healthy growth rate of 5.5 per cent sequentially and nearly 44 per cent YoY. "Despite concerns of premium tier smartphone saturation, both Samsung and Apple were able to deliver better than expected results in Q2," noted senior analyst Michael Morgan, ABI Research.

The high end of the smartphone market continued to perform well in Q2 as Samsung Galaxy S4 and Apple iPhones outpaced the overall market. Despite the surprising tenacity of premium smartphones, Apple's market share (14.6 per cent) dropped to its lowest point since 3Q11. ABI Research attributes this share loss to the success of the Samsung Galaxy S4 launch and the continued growth of low cost and mass market smartphone shipments.

"The 2H13 will be defined by fierce competition between price-aggressive OEMs moving towards the middle tiers for increased margins while at the same time top tier OEMs are diversifying portfolios into the middle in search of continued growth," said senior practice director Jeff Orr, ABI Research. As competitors such as Huawei, ZTE and Lenovo move their smartphone portfolios upstream, ABI Research expects increasing margin pressure on the premium smartphone segment where the majority of industry profits reside.

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