Galaxy S4 sales slumped over summer, says research firm

by: Bogdan PetrovanOctober 16, 2013

moto x vs galaxy s4 aa design galaxy s4

Unlike last year, when Samsung trumpeted the sales of the Galaxy S3, the Korean giant has been discreet about the market performance of its current flagship device, the Galaxy S4. Rumors suggest the reason for this silence is an unexpected sales slump that reportedly caused Samsung to accelerate the release of the Galaxy S5.

A newly released report from research firm Counterpoint seems to confirm the sales slump hypothesis. The firm released estimated sales data for August 2013, showing that Samsung sold 5 million units of the Galaxy S4 globally, a drop from the June peak of more than 7 million units. From the wording of the report, it appears that sales have also dropped in July, compared to June. August is historically a very slow month, says Counterpoint’s report, and sales may pick up again in the holiday season, thanks to promos and price cuts.

The research firm also ranked the top 10 selling handsets in August 2013, though we don’t understand why it listed the 16GB and the 32GB versions of the iPhone 5 separately. While the Galaxy S4 is on top, it’s probable that counting both versions of the iPhone together would change the leader.

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 International version
  • Apple iPhone 5-16GB
  • Apple iPhone 5-32GB
  • Nokia Asha 501
  • Samsung Galaxy Note II
  • Samsung Galaxy S III mini
  • Samsung Galaxy S III
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini I9190
  • Nokia Asha 205
  • Nokia 105

The report claims that, overall, Samsung managed to offset the slowdown in Galaxy S4 sales by moving more units in the budget segment (under US$200). Counterpoint cut its estimate for the total number of Galaxy S4 units sold by the end of 2013, from 100% more than the Galaxy S3, to 80% more. For comparison, Samsung announced it shipped 40 million Galaxy S3 units in early January 2013.

The figures in this report refer to sell-through, which is the number of devices that were actually sold to customers, as opposed to sell-in, which is the number of devices shipped to retailers and carriers.

  • Aniruddh

    probably because of Note 3? I wrote this on my mom’s Note 3.

    • David Soto

      How is she by the way?

  • RanRu

    Interesting that there are only three different manufacturers in that to ten list.

  • SpeakEzee

    The S4 has always seemed like a lazy move by Samsung. It’s a good phone but boring to me. It felt like an apple move. You know, if it you ain’t broke…

    • Jaun Lombard

      Yes I also think it was a lazy attempt…Just look at the Note 3 which is a very good attempt.

      I think The S5 will be a awesome phone. If its not…well Samsung will become the biggest budget phone maker in the world…not premium phone maker!

      What I want the S5 to be:
      Metal or carbon fibre with removable back plate
      Water and dust resistant
      64 bit…just because it need to be different to the rest!
      3 Ram
      +440 ppi AMOLED plastic display
      Newest Android with Windows phone dual boot option
      Good speakers like the HTC
      13 mega pixel camera, but will be able to compete with Sony’s low light camera
      Octa Core with LTE, because everybody is doing Snapdragon!
      Touchwiz upgrade…well one can dream of it.
      No Home button and a dedicated camera button on the side!

  • deepen03

    Samsung’s issue is selling too many of those budget Galaxy variants.. the S4 mini, Zoom, Round, etc.. The Galaxy Line should only apply to flagships like the Note and S4. Until they fix this, they will hurt sales of flagship devices like the S4.

  • cycad007

    Let’s just call it what it is…the high-end market is saturated. Samsung Electronics isn’t going to get anymore profitable than it is already. Sorry…but people are realizing that buying/upgrading a new phone every year is (in most cases) a waste of money. Couple this with cheap Chinese manufacturers entering the market and you’ll realize its now a race to the bottom for Android OEMs. Profit margins will be thinned over time.

    Samsung (and Android OEMs) are most likely to feel it worst than Apple because Apple still has a huge chunk of the education/government/business markets.

    • Jaun Lombard

      Wait untill all the S3 owners can upgrade after their 2 year contracts….the S3 was Awesome so they might still upgrade to the S5

  • Rams

    The s4 should have never happened!!!! They busted a APPLE MOVE…. S5 better be a slap to apple’s face !!! cuz the IPHONE 5C and Iphone 5S another JOKE!!

    WE DONT NEED A FINGERPRINT SCANNER…..Lets hit apple where it hurts since they wanna ban Samsung from the U.S.

    • needa

      who cares if they get banned? there are plenty of other options out there. and plenty of options that are better than the gs4.

      • Rams

        well ya there are other options out there but samsung in ” my opinion” has to be features and stuff that i actually use in the everyday phone… i have had a lg, nokia, htc… but samsung products are great products, there only problem is that they don’t listen to their consumers…

        so samsung being banned in the us is a huge deal !!

        • needa

          i personally only miss the swipe to call/message, and add number to call block since switching over to the x. but i realize thats just me. i guess i would miss some of their commercials. they do a good job with those. and they are good with phones for devving. but its not like my life would change in any way shape or form if samsung were banned.

  • Denis

    I am sorry but i believe that you have a mistake in there!

    Samsung announced it shipped 40 million Galaxy S3 units in early January 2012.

    I think it should be 2013.

  • Android Developer

    Am I the only one who find a Nokia device on the third place, just after iphone, a weird thing on the statistics?

    • These are handsets, not only smartphones. Nokia still sells a boatload of feature phones.

      • Android Developer

        yes i thought that might be the case, and after looking for this model, i can see it’s super cheap too.
        however, as i’ve understood, there is already more smartphones being sold than feature phones, no?
        i can see more and more people have smartphones and not feature phones.
        maybe most feature phones are sold at poor countries?

  • Steven m

    all this silly “not selling well rubbish”… haha
    the Galaxy S4 (not even including the mini or the active versions) sold 23 million units to the end of June… 7 million in august, 5 million in sept.. and July we don’t know but it’s likely at LEAST 5-6 million…
    So there are already around 40 million sold in less than 6 months!! the Galaxy S3 has managed about 60m lifetime sales so far. and the Galaxy S2 around 40m lifetime sales. you don’t factor in the S4 mini sales.. but you sure can factor in Galaxy S4 active into total S4 sales since it basically IS a Galaxy S4 just with added waterproofing etc … so it’s probably about 45million+ sales so far in not even 6 months. hardly not doing well is it?!

  • frankie

    40 plus million sold so far selling faster than s3