Huawei might have toppled Apple to become the world’s second-biggest smartphone maker last year, but it still has a ways to go before it can challenge reigning champion Samsung.
The South Korean brand shipped 76.9 million units between April and June this year, a 7 per cent increase from last year, according to statistics published by tech analysis firm Canalys on Wednesday (July 31).
Meanwhile, competitor Huawei shipped 58.7 million units – about three-quarters of Samsung’s figures.
Canalys said the Chinese giant suffered a “significant loss of momentum” in overseas markets due to the US’ blacklist in May, causing overseas shipments to fall by 17 per cent – or 21.4 million units.
While its overall shipments still grew 8 per cent, this figure was much lower than in previous quarters and primarily propped up by sales in China, where shipments grew 31 per cent.
Canalys Senior Analyst Ben Stanton said that the US blacklist had spooked concerns over the phones’ security and lifespan among mobile operators and customers.
However, it added that major operators seemed willing to make an exception, and were delaying procurement decisions – which are typically made at least six months in advance – to monitor developments.
Meanwhile, Samsung – which had “struggled to reassert its position” against rising Chinese brands – got a sales boost thanks to its competitively priced A series devices, which helped it win back business in Europe and Asia.
Canalys Research Director Rushabh Doshi said sales of the A series phone accounted for more than half of Samsung’s shipments, and were expected to drive its growth for the rest of the year.
“Samsung has been slow to respond to the threat from Huawei, Oppo, Vivo and Xiaomi, but it is now primed to win back market share and give the Chinese vendors a run for their money,” he added.
As for Apple, the US brand suffered a 13 per cent fall in shipments in the second quarter, which Canalys attributed to the iPhone XR, XS and XS Max not being differentiated enough to tempt customers to upgrade.
Rounding out the top five were Xiaomi and Oppo, which shipped 32.1 million and 30.6 million phones respectively.
In all, the the global smartphone market fell 2 per cent year on year to 331.8 million units, Canalys said.