238.1 mn mobile phones shipped in Q2, up 50 percent

According to Canalys, the industry shipped 238.1 million mobile phones in Q2, an impressive 50 percent year-on-year increase.

Samsung and Apple grew their shipments by 55 percent and 20 percent respectively to maintain first and second place. Lenovo, Yulong and Korean vendor LG completed the top five vendors.

Collectively, the five Chinese vendors shipping the most devices worldwide (Lenovo, Yulong, Huawei, ZTE and Xiaomi) made up 20 percent of the total market, up from less than 15 percent a year ago.

Apple’s market share fell to its lowest level since Q1 2009, but its numbers were buoyed by the performance of its older models after a price cut.

“The high end of the market continues to grow but there is no doubt that the explosive growth will come from the low end of the market,” said Chris Jones, VP and Principal Analyst.

Apple needs to respond to this dynamic and it is evident from the performance of its older models this quarter that there is real demand for a new low-cost iPhone. The challenge that it faces is maintaining high margins on arguably the most important products in its portfolio added Jones.

Shipments in China grew 108 percent year-on-year, the second highest growth rate of the major markets, to 88.1 million. This represented over a third of all worldwide shipments.

Lenovo took second place in China this quarter, where it shipped 10.8 million smart phones. 95 percent of its total 11.3 million shipments were in its home market, helping take it to third place in the worldwide smartphone market for the first time.

“Lenovo has benefited from its large TD-SCDMA product portfolio, much of which is aimed at the low-end,” said Nicole Peng, research director, China.

China Mobile’s strategy of continuously pushing TD-SCDMA smartphones to the mass market benefits local vendors, in particular Lenovo and Yulong. The critical task for these vendors now though is to reduce their reliance on their home market and grow their businesses internationally.

To achieve this they will need to invest in patents, establishing local teams and channels as well as diversifying their product portfolios to attract a broader range of consumer segments.

The US was still in second place in terms of shipments, but geographically, India stood out this quarter with smartphone shipments there growing the fastest of the major markets by 129 percent to hit 9 million and make it the world’s third largest smartphone market. But the dynamics of the market make it challenging for international vendors, besides Samsung, to succeed.

“Samsung has invested heavily in its brand and channel relationships over a number of years, which has given it a big advantage over many of its international competitors. Samsung took over a third of the Indian market this quarter, followed by local vendor Micromax at 22 percent. Karbonn, Sony and Nokia made up the top five,” said Jessica Kwee, Canalys Analyst.

India is a market in transition, moving from feature phones to smartphones, and is a market that offers huge potential as hundreds of millions of users have yet to upgrade their feature phones. Domestic vendors, such as Micromax and Karbonn, are capitalizing on the popularity of their feature phones and are quicker to respond to local market demands, hence their current success.

Platform-wise, Android grew the fastest during the quarter, by 79 percent year-on-year. It powered 190 million, or 80 percent, of the smartphones shipped in Q2.

Apple’s iOS share fell to 13 percent as the vendor readies itself for anticipated new products in the second half of 2013. Microsoft’s Windows phone shipments grew by 54 percent annually. BlackBerry’s shipments grew sequentially by 15 percent, also helping it to retain a 3 percent share of the market.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: