Overall 2015 global smartphone sales numbers are in, at least from research firm TrendForce, and the single-digit growth predicted by IDC just last month was exceeded. Not by a lot, but it’s pleasing to hear almost 1.3 billion intelligent handhelds were shipped worldwide in the past 12 months, despite mature markets reaching saturation and many formerly emerging countries looking to follow suit.
That represents a year-on-year progress of 10.3 percent, and it was all mostly due to fast-rising Chinese brands, which reportedly seized no less than seven of the top ten manufacturer slots. Huawei in particular enjoyed a stellar 2015, surpassing Lenovo for the third spot, while Xiaomi ended the year in fourth, also ahead of Motorola’s new owners, in spite of failure to achieve 80 – 100 mil goals.
The top two OEMs obviously remained the same old, same old, but Samsung for the first time posted a year-on-year 1.8 percent slump in sales, losing three precious percentage points in market share. Unless Apple dives into the low-end segment or expands the iPhone lineup with, say, half a dozen new models in 2016, the Galaxy’s overall domination should be safe, but the gap between gold and silver medals may further shrink.
Whether or not the GS7 manages to combine the best features of both the S6 and S5, Samsung is expected to drop another two percent or so in the next year, likely selling roughly as many smartphones as it did in 2015, i.e. 320 million units.
As for Cupertino, the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, as well as the lasting 6 and 6 Plus, boosted its sales figures by 17.7 percent, to 227M copies, which was enough for a healthy 17.5 percent slice of the global pie.