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Report: OnePlus was the only brand to grow year-on-year in US

It may have started from a small base, but OnePlus stood out in the US market in 2020.

Published onFebruary 4, 2021

OnePlus 8T rear hero shot
Ryan-Thomas Shaw / Android Authority
OnePlus 8T
  • OnePlus was the only major brand to grow its sales in 2020, according to a research firm.
  • It achieved a sell-through rate of over 160% in 2020 compared to 2019.

2020 was a rough year for everyone thanks to the pandemic, and the US smartphone market was also hit particularly hard as a result. However, it turns out that one mobile brand managed to buck the trend and actually grew year-on-year in 2020.

According to Counterpoint Research, OnePlus was the only major brand to grow year-on-year, seeing sell-through/sales growth of 163% compared to 2019. Meanwhile, both Apple and Samsung saw year-on-year declines of 3% and 5% respectively. Check out the chart below, courtesy of the tracking firm.

Counterpoint noted that carrier channels were a particularly significant area of growth for OnePlus, citing its relationship with T-Mobile (which kicked off in 2018), Sprint (starting in 2019), and Verizon (which offered the OnePlus 8 UW in 2020).

“T-Mobile continues to be the largest source of sales for OnePlus, with the OEM doubling down with new low-cost devices that are now even available in prepaid channels,” the tracking company explained. It added that OnePlus was also able to attract customers who were “disenfranchised” with current premium devices, and wanted more affordable high-end devices.

It’s worth noting that OnePlus started off at a very small base though, as it isn’t a top four player in the US and first teamed up with a carrier in 2018 (with the T-Mobile OnePlus 6T). It therefore isn’t completely surprising to see this growth, as the likes of Realme and Xiaomi also demonstrated explosive initial growth in the first few years after entering Europe.

Nevertheless, it seems like the new strategy of offering a growing portfolio of phones at various price-points seems to be working for OnePlus in the US so far. But will the company be able to continue this growth in 2021?

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