Apple Surpasses Samsung and Emerges as the Global Smartphone Maker; First Time Since 2016

Apple has overtaken Samsung and emerged as the largest smartphone vendor across the fourth according to the data assimilated by Gartner in the fourth quarter of 2020. The last time Apple managed such a feat was way back in 2016. So it has taken four years for the Cupertino tech giant to get ahead of one of its biggest competitors in the race. Apple manufactures a wide variety of products and most of its divisions have registered good sales. However, this shows that the company has been producing, distributing, and marketing its smartphones the right way.

In 2020’s final quarter, the company managed to sell 80 million iPhones. The introduction of the new iPhone series with 5G connectivity definitely helped in giving a boost to the sales. Anshul Gupta, a senior executive at Gartner, stated that the integration of 5G and upgraded camera features made a lot of customers feel comfortable about switching to iPhone 12 models. Because of these factors, Apple saw very high sales for iPhone in the final quarter of last year.

The Covid-19 situation resulted in a massive economic slowdown and implored people across the globe to be mindful about the way they spend their money. The decline in the sales of consumer goods led to most companies refraining from launching new products in the market. However, the upgraded features and the high-end technology which the iPhone 12 models came armed with made a large number of Apple fans invest in them. Apple deserves due credit for positioning its iPhone series smartly during this time and ensuring that the sales remain stable.

If you compare the sales the company registered in 2019, there has been good growth. In the last quarter of 2020, the company sold more than 10 million devices than it did in the earlier quarter. In the same quarter, the market share of Apple in the global smartphone space increased by around 15%. The market share of Samsung, which has been the biggest rival to Apple in the smartphone market, dropped by 11.8%. Compared to 2019, Samsung sold less than eight million devices less.

As per Annette Zimmerman, who leads the team of analysts for Apple at Gartner, as the market share of Apple increased by 15% the company took a step closer to an ‘upgrade super-cycle’. According to Apple’s CEO Tim Cook, in the first quarter of 2021, Apple delivered a record number of updates for its iPhones. On its own, the iPhone generated revenue that surpassed the figure of $65 billion in the first quarter itself.

This was quite impressive, considering the fact that the global smartphone market registered a decline of 12.5%. Most of the big players in the smartphone space took a hit because of the Covid-19 crisis but Apple and Xiaomi were two companies that remained unaffected by it to a large extent.

The growing popularity and the awareness around 5G connectivity accelerated the demand for 5G phones worldwide. Since there was an economic crisis around the world, the consumers were interested in buying 5G phones but at affordable prices. That is primarily the reason why a device like iPhone 12 mini, despite all the criticism that came its way, registered good sales and played an important role in charting out Apple’s success story in 2020.

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