FRAMINGHAM, MA – Smartphone vendors shipped a total of 337.2 million units worldwide in the second quarter, up 11.6% year-over-year, says International Data Corp.
This represents the second highest quarterly total on record. Following an above average first quarter, smartphone shipments were still able to remain slightly above the previous quarter thanks to robust growth in many emerging markets, says the research firm.
In the worldwide mobile phone market (inclusive of smartphones), vendors shipped 464.6 million units, down 0.4% compared to the same quarter in 2014.
"The overall growth of the smartphone market was not only driven by the success of premium flagship devices from Samsung, Apple, and others, but more importantly by the abundance of affordable handsets that continue to drive shipments in many key markets," said Anthony Scarsella, research manager with IDC's Mobile Phone team. "As feature phone shipments continue to decrease, vendors will continue to attack both emerging and developed markets with competitive smartphones that are both rich in features and low in price."
Samsung remained the leader in the worldwide smartphone market but was the only company among the top five to see its shipment volume decline year-over-year. The new Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge arrived with mixed results, as a limited supply of the Edge models did not keep pace with the demand for the new curved handset. Older Galaxy models, however, sold briskly thanks to deep discounts and promotions throughout the quarter, said IDC.
Apple had its biggest fiscal third quarter ever, with 47.5 million units shipped. The iPhone once again continued to dominate in China. The larger screened iPhones, along with the rapid expansion of 4G networks in China, continued to drive momentum for Apple in Asia/Pacific. As smartphone saturation continues to climb in many new developed markets like China, Apple will look to drive upgrades with refreshed "S" models in the following quarter, according to IDC.
Huawei captured the number three position thanks to strong European sales, as well as domestic sales that led to 48.1% year-over-year growth. Huawei's midrange and high-end models continue to prove successful, with the flagship P8, Honor Series, and Mate 7 handsets delivering sustainable growth both in the consumer and commercial segment. Huawei will now look beyond Europe and Asia/Pacific, as its latest P8 Lite handset launched in the US (as an unlocked model) earlier in the quarter.
Xiaomi continues to find success in its home country thanks to both premium and entry-level devices like the Mi Note and Redmi 2 handsets, which helped Xiaomi achieve a 29.7% year-over-year increase. With a significant presence in India and Southeast Asia, Xiaomi is now looking to bulk up its IP portfolio to expand its reach even further outside of Asia/Pacific, starting with Brazil, says IDC.
Lenovo, the third and final Chinese OEM on the list, captured the final spot despite home turf competition from both Xiaomi and Huawei.
Outside of China, Lenovo continued to witness success in many emerging markets such as India, with entry-level and midrange models like the A600 and A7000 sold via Internet retail channels. The Motorola brand within the Americas and Europe continues to thrive with the ultra-affordable second generation Moto E and entry-level to midrange Moto G devices. Launches of a third generation Moto X and Moto G look to be on the horizon for the second half of 2015.