Global smartphone sales reached one billion units in the the fourth quarter of 2014, a new study has found.
Research from Gartner found that global sales of the devices increased 29.9 per cent from the fourth quarter of 2013 to reach 367.5 units, with Samsung losing the number one spot in the global smartphone market to Apple.
In 2014, sales of smartphones to end users reached 1.2 billion units, marking a rise of 28.4 per cent from 2013 and representing two-thirds of global mobile phone sales.
Anshul Gupta, principal research analyst at Gartner, said: “Samsung's performance in the smartphone market deteriorated further in the fourth quarter of 2014, when it lost nearly 10 percentage points in market share.
“Samsung continues to struggle to control its falling smartphone share, which was at its highest in the third quarter of 2013. This downward trend shows that Samsung's share of profitable premium smartphone users has come under significant pressure.”
Apple recorded its best-ever quarter in the last three months of 2014, which is when it sold 74.8 million units and moved to number one in the global smartphone market.
The first large-screen phones have seen significant demand with sales in China and the US, rising at 56 per cent and 88 per cent respectively.
Apple’s new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus devices drove strong relationships in the iOS base. The new smartphones provide a larger screen and are a strong alternative to Android.
Lenovo also enjoyed a strong fourth quarter of 2014, with the company moving to the number three spot in the global smartphone market and growing 47.6 per cent year-over-year.
Strong mobile phone sales by Lenovo and Motorola helped the company to rise to the number three position, collecting a 6.6 percent market share and rising 47.6 per cent from last year.
As well as this, popularity in Russia, India, Indonesia and Brazil helped the company grow by 26 per cent in the mobile phone market across the fourth quarter of 2014.
Chinese vendors are improving their sales in China and other foreign markets, boosting their share in the mid to low-end smartphone market.
Roberta Cozza, research director at Gartner, also commented on the plans, noting that Chinese vendors are producing high quality devices with new hardware features that challenge more established businesses in the mobile phone sector.
Chinese vendors improve sales
Chinese vendors are continuing to improve their sales in China and other foreign markets by producing high quality markets.
“Brand building and marketing will be key activities in deciding which Chinese vendors can secure a foothold in mature markets,” Ms Cozza explained.
The availability of smartphones at lower prices led to the market recording double-digit growth in many emerging countries, including India, Russia and Mexico.
This benefitted Android greatly, as its market share grew 2.2 percentage points in 2014 and 32 per cent year-on-year.
Posted by Jon Aspinell on 25th March 2015
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