Wireless Smartphone Strategies

The industry’s most comprehensive set of critical market statistics and qualitative analysis, tracking and reporting on smartphones.

November 20, 2014 14:17 khyers

Global smartphone industry revenues rose +13% annually during Q3 2014, driven by demand for new iPhones and increasingly strong Chinese vendors. Apple regained the top position as the largest vendor by revenue this quarter, while Xiaomi leapt into the No.4 spot for the first time ever . TCL-Alcatel also posted surging volume and value. Meanwhile, mid-tier smartphones became the fastest-growing category by revenue.

This extensive report, VALUE SHARE:Global Smartphone Revenue and ASP by Vendor by Price Tier:Q3 2014, provides quarterly global smartphone shipments, wholesale (transfer) pricing, and revenue metrics for 16 major vendors from Q1 2011 to Q3 2014. Global smartphone vendor marketshare by price-tier, and global revenue-share tracking by PRICE-TIER, for all 14 vendors are also included. This report is a vital tool for monitoring the financial health and tiered marketshare of leading brands such as Nokia, HTC, BlackBerry, Samsung, Apple, Huawei, Xiaomi and others.

 


November 6, 2014 07:15 PLin

According to the latest report from our Wireless Smartphone Strategies (WSS) research service HTC’s global smartphone shipments continued to shrink in Q3 2014. The company’s volumes have been falling for the past three years and it is struggling to maintain profitability.

HTC continued to struggle in all territories except Asia Pacific. Asia Pacific was the only area where HTC showed positive growth, as it grew sales +8% YoY due to a strong performance in India. By contrast, HTC captured less than 1% smartphone market share in China, the world’s largest market. HTC remained weak in the valuable North America region, taking only 2% share. The sharp decline across the North America market was the main reason for its bad global performance. Meanwhile, HTC fell in Western and CE Europe, due to tough competition from LG and others.


November 6, 2014 05:25 woh

Samsung, the world's biggest smartphone vendor by volume, has officially announced a new duo of premium-looking metal smartphones, A3 and A5, at the end of October, 2014 and is planning on hard-launching them in November in select markets, mostly emerging markets, such as China at affordable price-points to address the mounting competition from local vendors. A3 and A5, which are the first two smartphones under the category of the new Galaxy A series, are believed to target the younger and first-time smartphone users in the growing emerging markets, with nice-looking metal unibody design, modest specifications and mid-ranged prices.

In addition to the metal design, it would be worth noting that these mid-priced smartphones are featuring 4G LTE connectivity and 5MP secondary camera, which is better than 3.7MP on more premium Galaxy Note 4. We believe that Samsung is taking on a selective marketing for the younger generation who wants to enjoy the faster data services on the faster 4G network, and spends much time to take the "selfie" photos in developing regions. There has been no words on the more advanced Galaxy A7 model, but will be expected to come with higher display resolution and stronger feature-sets later on.


October 31, 2014 12:13 nmawston

According to the latest report from our WSS (Smartphones) research service, global smartphone shipments reached 320 million units in the third quarter of 2014. The Android operating system captured a dominant 84 percent global marketshare, squeezing Apple iOS, Microsoft and Blackberry.

Global smartphone shipments grew 27 percent annually from 252.9 million units in Q3 2013 to 320.4 million in Q3 2014. Smartphone growth continues to be driven by robust demand in emerging markets, particularly Asia and Africa Middle East.

Android’s domination of global smartphone shipments remained strong in Q3 2014, with an impressive 84 percent of all smartphones now running Google’s OS. Android’s gain came at the expense of every major rival platform. BlackBerry’s global smartphone share has stayed flat at 1 percent in the past year, due to a lackluster range of BB10 devices. Apple iOS lost one point of share to Android because of its limited presence at the lower end of the smartphone market. Microsoft Windows Phone continued to struggle in China and Japan, and its global smartphone marketshare fell from 4 percent in Q3 2013 to 3 percent during Q3 2014.

 

Android’s leadership of the global smartphone market looks unbeatable at the moment. Its low-cost services and user-friendly software remain attractive to hardware makers, operators and consumers worldwide. However, challenges are emerging for Google. The Android platform is getting overcrowded with hundreds of hardware brands, Android smartphone prices are falling worldwide, and few Android device vendors make profits.



Exhibit 1: Global Smartphone OS Shipments and Market Share in Q3 2014 
[1]

Global Smartphone Operating System Shipments (Millions of Units)

Q3 '13

Q3 '14

Android

205.9

268.0

Apple iOS

33.8

39.3

Microsoft

10.3

10.5

BlackBerry

2.5

2.3

Others

0.4

0.3

Total

252.9

320.4

     

Global Smartphone Operating System Marketshare  %

Q3 '13

Q3 '14

Android

81.4%

83.6%

Apple iOS

13.4%

12.3%

Microsoft

4.1%

3.3%

BlackBerry

1.0%

0.7%

Others

0.2%

0.1%

Total

100.0%

100.0%

     

Total Growth Year-over-Year  %

46.4%

26.7%

     

Source: Strategy Analytics

   

 

 


[1]  Numbers are rounded.


October 30, 2014 10:49 nmawston

Lenovo and Motorola confirmed today, Thursday 30 October 2014, that the US$2.9 billion deal to merge their smartphone divisions has been approved and wrapped up. Two have become one.

According to analysis from our WSS (Smartphones) research service, the "big three" ADVANTAGES of the merger include:

1. Increased scale. Higher volumes can equal lower costs. Lenovo captured 5% marketshare of global smartphone shipments in Q3 2014, while Motorola captured 3% marketshare of global smartphone shipments in Q3 2014. Together, they now hold 8% share of the worldwide smartphone market;

2. Deeper distribution channels. Lenovo and Motorola together can now sell smartphones, tablets and wearables in more countries and in more retail stores, operator stores, online stores, or PC channels;

3. Bigger marketing / R&D budgets. Lenovo and Motorola together can potentially spend or borrow more to fund extra marketing and R&D activities.


The "big three" DISDVANTAGES of the merger include:

1. Lenovo is slowing down. Lenovo's rapid smartphone growth of recent years is now coming to an end, due to fierce competition from Xiaomi and others. Based on our data, Lenovo's global smartphone shpiments annual growth rate has more than halved from +74% YoY in Q3 2013 to +30% YoY in Q3 2014;

2. Motorola is losing money. Motorola continues to make hefty financial losses, due to a relatively large cost-base. Based on Strategy Analytics data, Motorola has NOT made a profit for 4 years;

3. Smartphone mergers usually take several years to integrate. For example, TCL-Alcatel, a Chinese and French merger, took around 5 years to stabilize and sustain growth.


Clearly, Lenovo and Motorola have strong tailwinds -- such as 8% global smartphone marketshare and two well-known brands. But Lenovo and Motorola also face major headwinds. Lenovo's golden era of easy smartphone growth is coming to an end, while Motorola continues to lose money. Merging these two firms next year will NOT be as easy as many expect.


October 29, 2014 23:57 nmawston

According to the latest report from our WSS (Smartphones) research service, global smartphone shipments grew 27 percent annually to reach a record 320 million units in the third quarter of 2014. Xiaomi was the star performer, capturing a record 6 percent marketshare and becoming the world’s third largest smartphone vendor for the first time ever.

 

Global smartphone shipments grew 27 percent annually from 252.9 million units in Q3 2013 to a record 320.4 million in Q3 2014. Smartphone growth was mixed on a regional basis during the quarter, with healthy demand in Asia and Africa counterbalanced by sluggish volumes across North America and Europe due to ongoing changes in the operator subsidy mix.

 

Samsung shipped 79.2 million smartphones worldwide and captured 25 percent marketshare in Q3 2014, dipping from 35 percent a year earlier. Samsung continues to face tough competition from Apple at the higher-end of the smartphone market, from Xiaomi and Huawei in the middle-tiers, and from Lenovo and others at the entry-level. Samsung is aiming to fight back in the next quarter with fresh models such as the Galaxy Note Edge and Note 4. Apple grew a below-average 16 percent annually and shipped 39.3 million iPhones worldwide for 12 percent marketshare in Q3 2014. Apple’s iPhone growth is slowing worldwide because of its limited presence in the fast-growing entry-level segment. Xiaomi was the star performer in the quarter, capturing a record 6 percent marketshare and rising into third place in the global smartphone rankings for the first time ever. Xiaomi’s Android smartphone models are wildly popular in the Chinese market and it shifts millions of them every quarter through its extensive online and operator channels. Xiaomi’s next step is to target the international market in Asia and Europe, where it may face stronger headwinds of low brand awareness and technology-patent challenges next year.

 

LG shipped a record 16.8 million smartphones worldwide in Q3 2014, rising to fourth position and taking 5 percent global share. LG is performing relatively well in the United States and Europe, due to attractive new models such as the G3 and L series. Huawei rounded out the top five players with 5 percent global smartphone share in the quarter. Huawei’s core strengths lie in emerging markets, such as Africa, China and Latin America, where it operates extensive distribution channels.

 


Exhibit 1: Global Smartphone Vendor Shipments and Marketshare in Q3 2014 
[1]

Global Smartphone Vendor Shipments (Millions of Units)

Q3 '13

Q3 '14

Samsung

88.4

79.2

Apple

33.8

39.3

Xiaomi

5.2

18.0

LG

12.0

16.8

Huawei

12.7

16.5

Others

100.8

150.6

Total

252.9

320.4

     

Global Smartphone Vendor Marketshare (%)

Q3 '13

Q3 '14

Samsung

35.0%

24.7%

Apple

13.4%

12.3%

Xiaomi

2.1%

5.6%

LG

4.7%

5.2%

Huawei

5.0%

5.1%

Others

39.9%

47.0%

Total

100.0%

100.0%

 

 

 

Total Growth: Year-over-Year (%)

46.4%

26.7%

     

Source: Strategy Analytics

   


[1]  Numbers are rounded.


October 28, 2014 21:14 nmawston

According to a new report from our WSS (Smartphones) research servcice, Apple shipped 39 million iPhones worldwide in Q3 2014. Its annual shipment growth rate was only +16% and it continues to slow down. However, weaker shipments are being offset by a stronger ASP, which increased for the first time in two years due to a higher mix of expensive iPhone 6 models. More analysis of Apple's pricing can be viewed by clients here.


October 20, 2014 15:20 nmawston

According to a new report from our Wireless Smartphone Strategies (WSS) service, Blackberry captured 1% smartphone share worldwide in Q3 2014. The company’s hardware division is finally on the cusp of returning to profits for the first time in three years. Cost cuts (e.g. outsourcing) and improved BB10 designs -- like the Z3 and Passport models -- are driving the vendor’s enhanced performance. Additional analysis can be viewed by clients here.


October 15, 2014 00:35 lsui

Our Wireless Smartphone Strategies (WSS) services tracked Mozilla's Firefox phone has been available in more than 20 countries across Europe, Central Latin American and Asia by Q3 2014. Espedially in India, the third largest smartphone market, a couple of Indian OEMs, including Spice and Intex, have launched Firefox phones targetting low tier and ultra low cost segment. We forecast entry tier and ultra low cost smartphones (with wholesale price of US$ 99 and below) will make up nealy half of total smartphone volumes in Indian in 2015. Android based smartphones are currently dominating low cost segments in emering markets. Firefox low cost smartphones would intensify the competition and grab grand from Android.

However, compared with the leading position of Android, Firefox still has a long way to go. In Q2 2014, our Wireless Smartphone Strategies (WSS) services estiamted Firefox only took 0.1% volume share in global smartphone market, while Android reached a new record of 85%. It will take time for Firefox to ramp up in global smartphone market, but with extened OEM and operator partners in more markets, it is well-positioned to fule futher growth in the foreseeable future.

 


October 7, 2014 15:20 khyers

Microsoft’s strategy to grow the Windows ecosystem for mobile devices has begun to pay dividends, with the company reporting that it has signed 50 new hardware partners since spring this year.  Beginning in April 2014 Microsoft announced that it would make its Windows OS platform available free to hardware vendors for devices smaller than nine (9) inches, a strategy it has adopted in order to rapidly grow the size of the operating system’s ecosystem.  Strategy Analytics’ WSS (Smartphones) service shows that sales of smartphones using the Windows Phone OS grew by 90% year-on-year in 2013, but that growth stalled in Q2 2014.  Microsoft’s new strategy, which is intended to encourage the development of devices costing less than $200, will help to drive smartphone sales of the platform going forward, though the biggest movement is not likely to be seen before 2015.

The report Global Smartphone OS Market Share by Region: Q2 2014 provides a complete view of the current standing of all of the mobile operating systems and is valuable for mobile stakeholders who want to size the huge market for smartphones and OS market share.