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Samsung and other competitors have outgrown Apple in the premium market

Apple's market share in the premium smartphone segment has suffered greatly, as Samsung and other Android manufacturers increased shipments of devices in the $400+ price range.
June 18, 2013

A recent study by Counterpoint Research shows that Samsung and other manufacturers have bitten huge chunks of Apple’s market share in the past year, when it comes to premium smartphones priced above $400. The same trend can also be observed in the number of premium phones shipped in the past year, where Apple’s dominance seems to fade away.

Due to competition from handsets like the Samsung Galaxy S3/4, Galaxy Note 2, the HTC One, One X, and others, Apple’s market share in the segment has dropped from 73 percent in May 2012, to 38 percent in May this year (as seen in the graphic below, from Tech-Thoughts). On the other hand, Samsung experienced the biggest growth, jumping from 20 percent last year to a healthy 47 percent, measured last month.

The share of the Others group, which includes Android manufacturers, but also Nokia and Blackberry, also doubled in just one year.

Premium Smartphone Market Share
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The figures above may be a bit misleading regarding Samsung’s vertiginous rise. The Samsung Galaxy S3 was launched at the end of May 2012 so the company’s last year flagship cannot be given much credit for Samsung’s market share in that specific month.

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Smartphone shipments – credit:

As Tech-Thoughts reports, a more accurate view on the market can be gained by analyzing the number of smartphone shipped in the same time-frame. Using his own estimations, Tech-Thoughts‘ Sameer Singh notes that the iPhone shipment numbers have remained virtually unchanged over the past year, while Samsung’s figures have rose greatly, from around 2.5 million in May 2012 to around 13 million this year.

When comparing the rise of other manufacturers to Samsung’s and Apple’s, we have even more interesting results. Samsung has managed to keep the pace with other product vendors while Apple was left behind.

It’s also worth noting that Q2 is usually Apple’s weakest quarter and that in the period in which the study was conducted, Apple released only one smartphone: the iPhone 5.The company is expected to launch another handset in the months to come.