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Report: Global smartphone sales rose a little, Xiaomi’s rose a lot

Gartner's report of the smartphone sales of the first quarter of 2018 is overall positive, especially if you are a Xiaomi fan.

Published onMay 29, 2018

  • The latest report from Gartner shows that overall global smartphone sales rose by 1.3 percent this year as compared to last year.
  • However, Xiaomi’s sales and market share blew up since Q1 2017, making it the clear winner this year.
  • Samsung, OPPO, and every manufacturer outside the top five got some bad news this quarter.

Research and advisory company Gartner just published its numbers for worldwide smartphone sales in the first quarter of 2018. Surprisingly, overall sales numbers went up by a slight 1.3 percent when compared to the first quarter of 2017.

This is good news, as smartphone shipments and sales have been in a bit of a slump recently, due to a variety of factors, with “flagship fatigue” being the most notable.

However good that 1.3 percent rise might be for the industry as a whole, it’s nothing compared to what Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi is pulling off. Compared to Q1 last year, Xiaomi’s market share jumped by a whopping 118 percent. The company sold 28.5 million smartphones so far in 2018, compared to 12.7 million in Q1 2017.

Fellow Chinese company Huawei also saw some significant gains, although nowhere near Xiaomi’s numbers. HUAWEI sold 40.4 million smartphones in Q1 2018, compared to 34.2 million in 2017. HUAWEI now controls 10.5 percent of the smartphone market, a nice increase over its previous hold of 9 percent.

Apple also saw some slight gains over last year, selling a little over 2 million more smartphones than it did in Q1 2017. That was enough to bump up its market share from 13.7 percent to 14.1 percent in 2018.

For the first time ever, smartphone sales go down year-over-year

The other two companies that make up the top five – Samsung and Oppo – didn’t have much good news this quarter. Both companies lost market share and sold fewer phones in the first quarter of this year than they did during the previous. Samsung’s market share dropped slightly from 20.8 percent to 20.5 percent, and OPPO took a big dive from 8.2 percent to 7.3 percent.

Every other smartphone company outside the top five – collectively referred to as “Others” – also lost market share and phone sales. These companies are probably scrambling to figure out how to stop losing their sales to Xiaomi and HUAWEI.

In slightly related news, Gartner also published some numbers on which mobile operating systems are losing or gaining market share. Unfortunately, iOS is once again stealing users from Android, with Apple’s OS gaining about 0.4 percent market share and Android losing about 0.2 percent market share.

However, it should be noted that Android still dominates globally: Android now holds 85.9 percent of the global smartphone market, compared to Apple’s tiny 14.1 percent.

You can read Gartner’s full report here.

NEXT: Xiaomi’s market share explodes in Europe

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