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IDC: Smartphone vendor ranking changed in 4Q

In the fourth quarter, Apple surpassed Samsung to become the world's top 1 vendor by sales. 

The rankings of the world’s top five smartphone vendors changed in the fourth quarter, when total sales declined and competition heated up, IDC said in a report today.

In the fourth quarter, Apple surpassed Samsung to become the world’s top 1 vendor by sales. China’s Xiaomi regained the No. 4 position with doubled market shares from a year ago, while Huawei ranked No. 3 and Oppo No.5 globally, said IDC or International Data Corp, a US-based research firm.

Vendors altogether sold 403.5 million smartphones in the fourth quarter, resulting in a 6.3 percent decline from a year ago. For the full year of 2017,the sales reached 1.47 billion units, decreasing about 1 percent from a year ago. Developed markets such as China and the United States both witnessed a decline because sales “hitting the pause button in the holiday quarter", said IDC in the report.

The figure echoed the opinion that the market is “saturated and fiercely competed”, mentioned by Chinese firms like Oppo,ZTE and 360.

In the fourth quarter, Apple, Samsung and Huawei maintained stronghold on the high end market, with shares of 19.2 percent, 18.4 percent and 10.2 percent separately.

Apple sold 77.3 million iPhones in the quarter with a 1.3 percent decline, which still helped Apple to past Samsung with iPhone 8, 8 Plus and iPhone X. But Apple’s iPhone X is not “as strong as many expected”, said IDC.

Xiaomi, the only smartphone vendor with sales growth among the top five players, managed to double its share to 7 percent from 3.3 percent during the quarter. The growth came from sales outside China, with India and Russia being two of its largest markets.

Xiaomi, which is preparing IPO in Hong Kong, is “seriously preparing for” sales in the US market this year,  said Xiaomi’s chairman Lei Jun in December.

Oppo, ranking the No.5 in the fourth quarter, grabbed a market share of 6.8 percent, compared with 7.3 percent a year ago. It has expanded in the overseas markets like India and Japan.



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