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What happened, Android? The top 7 best-selling smartphones last year were all iPhones

iPhones create the most market momentum, and no matter how you cut it, Android smartphones can't keep up.
By

Published onFebruary 21, 2024

Samsung Galaxy S24 vs Google Pixel 8 vs Apple iPhone 15 angled 2
Robert Triggs / Android Authority
TL;DR
  • A report from Counterpoint featuring data for December 2023 and all of 2023 showcases how Apple dominated the sales chart globally, with most of the top slots going to iPhones.
  • Samsung phones break into the list, but only with budget models.
  • Android flagships like the Galaxy S23 series did not create comparable market momentum to feature as best-selling smartphones.

We love our Android flagships, and in many ways, they are better than Apple’s flagship iPhone. However, consumers around the world do not necessarily agree. Consumers have overwhelmingly chosen iPhones when it comes to voting with their wallets, as seven of the top 10 best smartphones globally were all iPhones.

According to Counterpoint‘s latest report, the top seven best sellers in 2023 were all iPhones, primarily spread across the iPhone 14 series and iPhone 15 series, with the iPhone 13 also scoring a seat. The top 10 smartphones in all of 2023 captured a combined market share of 20%, up from 19% in 2022.

The iPhone 14 was the best-selling smartphone of 2023. It managed to capture 19% of total iPhone sales in 2023, which the report notes isn’t as impressive as 2022’s bestseller iPhone 13’s erstwhile 28% share. Apple’s total sales remained flat in 2023, which is positive when you consider that sales of major Android competitors declined. The iPhone 15 series took the top three spots for Q4 2023, so there’s a chance we see them extending their good run even into 2024.

If you were looking for Android phones in the list, you will only find budget Android smartphones, and that too, only from Samsung. The Galaxy A14 5G, Galaxy A04e, and Galaxy A14 4G occupied the bottom three spots in the top 10 list for December 2023.

Earlier in the month, a report from Canalys also put together a similar yearly trend in an infographic.

Even through a different analyst source, the top five smartphones globally were iPhones. Samsung’s presence was limited to three of the bottom five spots, though this report does assign good success to the mid-range Galaxy A54 5G. Android flagships like the Samsung Galaxy S23 series are nowhere to be found on the bestsellers list, and that’s not good.

For 2024, we can expect Apple’s momentum to continue for the beginning of the year, at least, since the iPhone 15 series sits solidly as a good iPhone to upgrade to. Chinese brands could also enter the list with newer launches at the beginning of the year. Still, we’d love to see more Android phones sold worldwide throughout the year, which is supremely important for the longer-term health of the Android platform and the broader smartphone ecosystem.

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