Samsung, Apple and Huawei each shipped over 100 million smartphones in 2015, Xiaomi likely came close to hitting its bold 80M goal, Lenovo and LG didn’t do very bad at the global box-office either, and even Meizu tallied roughly 20 mil sales in just 12 months.
Why are we then talking of a manufacturer with a measly 4M score under its belt? Simple – LeTV, while a well-known and respected name in the Chinese entertainment industry for many years, only made its smartphone debut eight and a half months back, somehow pulling off an ultra-high-profile Qualcomm partnership in the meantime to be among the first to carry the Snapdragon 820 processor.
The company’s first-generation Android trio, composed of the fairly affordable yet impressive Le 1, Le 1 Pro, and Le Max, was reportedly responsible for one million sales in 90 days, i.e. the fastest entry in the million-unit club for a market novice.
Now, LeTV claims the three devices, alongside the Le 1s, reached stellar new heights of 4 million copies before the end of the year, which you have to admit sounds like a way more credible number than the alleged 11M pre-orders of the LeTV Le 1s alone. Remarkable but relatively plausible.
To put the figure into the right perspective, we should probably compare it to the commercial achievements of another hyped rookie, like OnePlus, rather than veterans Samsung or Huawei. Granted, the OnePlus One only received a sibling sequel in the summer of 2015, i.e. over a year after its release, and Pete Lau’s startup always had production and distribution difficulties.
Still, it took LeTV essentially the same time it took OnePlus to make the 1 mil mark to cross 4 million unit sales, which says something about this ambitious tech outfit’s growth potential.