Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics are two biggest rivals to each other in smartphone segment. Now, both these companies are focusing on to increase their market presence in emerging markets such as China and India. Undoubtedly, in both these markets, Samsung is dominating over Apple Inc. in terms of smartphone shipments. However, in emerging market like India, where Apple Inc. has reported a staggering 400% growth in iPhone sales over the last three months.
Local Vendors Makes Android A Dominating OS In China
Of course, in India and China, majority of smartphone market share is being dominated by Google’s mobile OS. According to China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, Android is getting out of control in the country in smartphone segment. Even country’s mobile OS Research & Development is quite dependent on Google’s mobile OS. However, the ministry has lashed out the mobile OS due to its openness, despite Google’s services or technology are being controlled by the searching giant. We can’t deny with the importance of smaller domestic smartphone vendors for making Android successful in the country. In 2012, China alone accounted for 26.5% of smartphone sales, and it was ranked as the world’s largest smartphone market in terms of sales.
Google is still little bit skeptical to extend its business back in China due to censorship and hacking issues. This is the reason why Google’s ‘search engine’ market share in the country has fallen by almost half. However, you shouldn’t confuse with the market share of Google’s search engine and its mobile OS. Android market share has continuously been mounting up in the country. We have already discussed that 94% of Samsung smartphone sold in entire last year were powered by Android OS.
Apple Inc. Reaches To Third Spot In China
In 2012, Samsung Electronics topped Chinese smartphone market in terms of sales. The south Korean company nearly tripled its smartphone sales in the world’s largest mobile handset market last year; the company sold 30.06 million smartphones in 2012, up from 10.9 million units a year back in 2011. More importantly, Samsung succeeded to grab 17.7% Chinese smartphone market share, followed by the Chinese company Lenovo and the U.S.-based Apple Inc., those were ranked second and third respectively in the last quarter. Lenovo managed second spot with 13.2% market share, up 4% from 2011, while Apple Inc. grabbed 11% market share, followed by China’s Huawei Technologies with 9.9% market share, and Coolpad with 9.7%.
Interestingly, Samsung recorded 300% Y/Y growth in terms of sales in China. On the other side, the world’s second largest mobile handset manufacturer Nokia took number seven position in the country, with just 3.7% of smartphone market share, down from 29.9% in 2011. Despite the supremacy in China, Samsung lagged behind Apple Inc. in the market during last quarter–thanks to strong sales of iPhone 5, which led the company to improve its market share in the country. Apple shipped 2 million units of iPhone 5 in first weekend of its availability. However, in upcoming quarter, Samsung Galaxy S4 could be one of the biggest threat for Apple’s iPhones, as a significant number of users are waiting for the Galaxy S next iteration.
Furthermore, anything could happen this year. Indeed, it’s tough to predict what is going to happen later this year, as demand of budget-friendly smartphones are speculated to increase. However, Android’s dominance in the market is still expected to be unanimous, but it would be difficult for companies like Samsung to compete effectively with local vendors in such markets. Just few weeks before, Morgan Stanley suggested that Apple could triple its smartphone market share in China with its low-priced iPhone, known as iPhone mini.
Smartphone Market Share Of Apple Inc. In the U.S.
By the end of Q4 2012, 125.9 million people in the U.S. owned smartphones, representing 54% of overall mobile handset market share, up 5% compared to the quarter ending September 2012. Furthermore, Apple topped the U.S. with 36.3% smartphone market share in terms of shipments. On the other side, Samsung slipped to second position with 21% market share in Q4 2012, followed by HTC with 10.2% share and Motorola with 9.1% share during the same quarter.
More importantly, China would lead smartphone market with 301.2 million units sales in 2013, followed by the U.S. with 137.5 million units. In addition, India is going to be the third largest smartphone market by 2017, next to China and the U.S. It’s pretty much clear that there’s a huge scope for smartphone manufacturers in emerging countries like India and China, and even in the matured market like the U.S. Both Apple Inc. and Samsung are trying to hit their nails hard to dominate the smartphone markets, and this is the main reason why they are more focused on China and the U.S.