Though one recent report suggested that iOS is gaining in popularity among Android converts in key markets around the world, data from analysts at International Data Corp. (IDC), paints a much more cautious — if not outright threatening — picture of Apple’s current status as the world’s No. 2 smartphone shipper by volume.
Specifically, according to IDC’s most recent data, it’s the up-and-coming, Chinese smartphone maker Huawei who’s overwhelming growth and popularity has skyrocketed in recent years — to the point, says IDC analyst Francisco Jeronimo, that the company could easily knock Apple from its position within the next year.
“They will probably overtake Apple in the smartphone business, either this year or next year,” Jeronimo, IDC’s European-based director of mobile devices, recently told CNBC News. “This is a huge challenge for Samsung because Huawei aims to become number one.”
Samsung is currently the world’s No. 1 smartphone vendor by volume, with Apple following closely in second place, and Huawei at No. 3.
- Jeronimo points to the most recent sales data from the second-quarter of this year. Apple’s market share rose to 12%, based on total shipments of 41 million iPhones.
- Huawei’s market share, though only 11.3%, actually rose year-over-year by a whopping 20%. The Chinese smartphone-maker shipped 38 million handsets in Q2, according to Business Insider.
Since its founding in 1987, Huawei has made a name for itself in mainland China for creating an arsenal of high-quality devices offered at affordable price points. Recent years, however, have seen the burgeoning smartphone-maker create a slew of more high-end devices like the generously-equipped Honor 8, which was clearly designed to go head-to-head with similar high-end offerings like the iPhone and Galaxy Note.
While it remains to be seen if Huawei’s attempt at overtaking Apple is ultimately successful, it’s definitely worth pointing out that “marketshare,” or rather the monopolization thereof, is not and never really was a driving force up in Cupertino. Certainly, Apple would like to sell as many iPhones as it possibly can, however, far more integral to the tech-giant’s sustained success is not the iPhone itself, but the sale of everything else that goes along with it — whether that be apps, digital content like movies and music, accessories, or otherwise.
And besides, even if Huawei ends up selling more smartphones than Apple next year (which it feasibly could), that’s certainly not to suggest the Honor-maker will bank anywhere near what Cupertino stands to. In fact, according to the latest data collected by market research firm Strategy Analytics, between just the two of them, Samsung and Apple took home an unprecedented 94% of the smartphone industry’s overall profits last year.