Wireless Smartphone Strategies

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

September 15, 2014 22:47 lsui

Google unveiled three new smartphones based on the previously announced Android One program at an event in New Delhi, India, on September 15th, 2014.

The 3 new models are the Spice One Dream UNO Mi-498, Micromax Canvas A1 and Karbonn Sparkle V. They are all based on the Android One platform (KitKat) and come with the Google Play Store preinstalled.

Our Wireless Smartphone Strategies (WSS) service forecasts Android One to account for 1% of global smartphone sales in 2014. It is a niche-but-growing program for superphone vendors to target the "next billion" users in emerging markets.


September 9, 2014 22:28 lsui

As expected, the newly launched Apple iPhone 6 and 6 Plus did NOT contain many surprises, as some features (size and NFC etc.) had already leaked before. However, there are a few things missing that caught the attention of analysts in our WSS (Smartphones) research service:

1. No 32GB version for both models. Now, 64GB has filled the position of 32GB, and Apple futher extended this with a 128GB version. Apple is not the first vendor to launch a 128GB version (e.g. Meizu MX3 128GB), but we believe the cheaper 16GB version will still make up a big chunk of iPhone 6 and 6 Plus volumes. Meanwhile, the 64GB and 128GB models will, of course, help Apple to maintain a higher-pricing position;

2. The rumored sapphire crystal display did not come true with the new iPhones. Instead, Apple adopted it into the Apple Watch, a small-screen device. We suspect manufaturing capacity might be a key reason for Apple not adopting a sapphire display in its new iPhones;

3. Not LTE Cat 6 powered. The iPhone 5 and 5s were powered with LTE Cat 3 chipsets, and some expected new iPhones to have Cat 6, the most advanced 4G chipset, allowing 300Mbps downlink rate. However, it has ended up that the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus only support 150Mbps Cat 4 category;

4. Camera function did not make a major improvement. Since the iPhone 4S, Apple has not significantly enhanced the camera function. The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus still feature an 8-megapixel camera, and it is not supporting 4K video-catpure. Apple is lagging here on these tech specs;

5. China (mainland) is not on the first 9-country list. Different from last year, China is NOT on the first 9-country list at launch. The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus will be available in US, Canada, UK, France, Germany, Australia, Japan, Singapore and Hong Kong on September 19th, 2014. We suspect China clamping down on the iPhone in the government sector may have caused the change. This could become a serious challenge for Apple.


September 3, 2014 01:33 lsui

According to a new report from our Wireless Smartphone Strategies (WSS) service -- Value Share : Global Smartphone Revenue and ASP by Vendor by Price-Tier : Q2 2014 -- Lenovo became the world's largest smartphone vendor by volume in the entry-tier category in the second quarter of 2014. This is a first for the company.

However, we note the vast majority of Lenovo's smartphone shipments are generated in its home market of China. Outside China, Lenovo remains a tiny second-tier smartphone brand at the moment.

More analysis of Lenovo and smartphone shipments by price-tier can be viewed by clients here.


August 8, 2014 06:03 lsui

According to the latest report from our Wireless Smartphone Strateiges (WSS) services : Global Smartphone Vendor Marketshare by Region : Q2 2014, Chinese brands take 6 of top 10 spots. Samsung and Apple take the top 2 positions, while Huawei, Lenovo and Xiaomi take the rest 3 spots in our top 5 list. Coolpad, ZTE and TCL-Alcatel rank No. 7, No. 8 and No. 10 respectively.

Xiaomi, TCL-Alcatel, Huawei and Motorola were the star performers among top brands this quarter, growing way above the industry average rate.

Chinnese vendors now account for an impressive 6 of top 10 spots in our global smartphone rankings. We are moving into the "Chinese decade".


August 6, 2014 21:47 nmawston

According our Smartphones (WSS) research service, HTC’s global smartphone shipments fell year-on-year in Q2 2014. This was the vendor’s tenth straight quarter of volume declines. Like Motorola and Nokia, should HTC start searching for a merger partner in 2015? This published report, available to clients, explores the strategic options available to HTC.


July 31, 2014 05:50 nmawston

According to the latest research from our WSS (Smartphones) service, global smartphone shipments grew 27 percent annually to reach 295 million units in the second quarter of 2014. Xiaomi was the star performer, capturing a record 5 percent marketshare and becoming the world’s fifth largest smartphone vendor for the first time ever.

Global smartphone shipments grew 27 percent annually from 233.0 million units in Q2 2013 to 295.2 million in Q2 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 changes in the operator subsidy mix.

Samsung shipped 74.5 million smartphones worldwide and captured 25 percent marketshare in Q2 2014, dipping from 33 percent a year earlier. Samsung continues to face tough competition from Apple at the higher-end of the smartphone market and from Chinese brands like Huawei at the lower-end. Apple grew a below-average 13 percent annually and shipped 35.2 million iPhones worldwide for 12 percent marketshare in Q2 2014. Apple is currently in a holding pattern awaiting the expected launch of bigger-screen iPhones later this year. Huawei maintained third position in smartphones globally with a record 7 percent marketshare. Huawei is making strong gains in the high-growth LTE market with popular models such as the Ascend P7. In contrast, Lenovo is struggling in the fast-emerging LTE segment and as a result its global smartphone marketshare stayed broadly flat around the 5 percent range. Lenovo’s smartphone growth has more than halved in the past year and its rapid expansion seen in recent quarters is coming to an end.

Xiaomi was the star performer in the quarter, capturing a record 5 percent marketshare and rising into fifth 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 will have to invest big money to familiarize western consumers with its unfamiliar brand name. LG held sixth place for 5 percent global smartphone share and a record 14.5 million units shipped. LG is performing relatively well in the United States and Europe, but it continues to lag in the huge China and India markets.

Exhibit 1: Global Smartphone Vendor Shipments and Marketshare in Q2 2014 [1]

Global Smartphone Vendor Shipments (Millions of Units)

Q2 '13

Q2 '14

Samsung

76.0

74.5

Apple

31.2

35.2

Huawei

11.1

20.1

Lenovo

11.3

15.8

Xiaomi

4.1

15.1

LG

12.1

14.5

Others

87.2

120.0

Total

233.0

295.2

 

 

 

Global Smartphone Vendor Marketshare  %

Q2 '13

Q2 '14

Samsung

32.6%

25.2%

Apple

13.4%

11.9%

Huawei

4.8%

6.8%

Lenovo

4.8%

5.4%

Xiaomi

1.8%

5.1%

LG

5.2%

4.9%

Others

37.4%

40.6%

Total

100.0%

100.0%

 

 

 

Total Growth Year-over-Year %

48.9%

26.7%

 

 

 

Source: Strategy Analytics

 

 

 


[1] Numbers are rounded.


July 30, 2014 23:55 nmawston

According to the latest research from our WSS (Smarpthones) service, global smartphone shipments reached 295 million units in the second quarter of 2014. The Android operating system captured a new record of 85 percent global marketshare, mainly at the expense of BlackBerry, Apple iOS and Microsoft Windows Phone.

Global smartphone shipments grew 27 percent annually from 233.0 million units in Q2 2013 to 295.2 million in Q2 2014. We estimate worldwide smartphone growth has halved during the past year, from 49 percent a year ago to 27 percent today. Global smartphone growth in the current quarter is at its lowest level for five years, and there are wide variations by region. For example, Africa and Asia are booming, while North America and Europe are maturing.

Android’s domination of global smartphone shipments reached a new peak in Q2 2014, with an impressive 85 percent of all smartphones now running Google’s OS. Android’s gain came at the expense of every major rival platform. BlackBerry saw its global smartphone share tumble from 2 percent to 1 percent in the past year due to a weak line-up 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 the United States and China, and its global smartphone marketshare fell from 4 percent in Q2 2013 to just 3 percent during Q2 2014.

Like the PC market, Android is on the verge of turning smartphone platforms into a one-horse race. Its low-cost services and user-friendly software remain wildly attractive to hardware makers, operators and consumers worldwide. Rival OS vendors are going to have to do something revolutionary to overturn Android’s huge lead in smartphone shipments. Apple’s push into the big-screen phablet market and Firefox’s expansion into the ultra-low-cost smartphone market later this year are the only major threats to Android’s continued growth at this stage.

Exhibit 1: Global Smartphone OS Shipments and Market Share in Q2 2014 [1]

Global Smartphone OS Shipments (Millions of Units) Q2 '13 Q2 '14
Android 186.8 249.6
Apple iOS 31.2 35.2
Microsoft 8.9 8.0
Blackberry 5.7 1.9
Others 0.5 0.5
Total 233.0 295.2
     
Global Smartphone OS Marketshare  % Q2 '13 Q2 '14
Android 80.2% 84.6%
Apple iOS 13.4% 11.9%
Microsoft 3.8% 2.7%
Blackberry 2.4% 0.6%
Others 0.2% 0.2%
Total 100.0% 100.0%
     
Total Growth Year-over-Year % 48.9% 26.7%
     
Source: Strategy Analytics    


[1] Numbers are rounded.


July 24, 2014 02:49 woh

According to the recently published report from Wireless Smartphone Strategies (WSS) service, global smartphone user base is expected to get close to 2.5 billion by the close of 2015. By region term, Asia Pacific is estimated to account for a lion's share, mainly boosted by a growing number of smartphone users in emerging markets including China, India, Indonesia, Philippines and Vietnam in addition to two established smartphone countries, South Korea and Japan. Smartphone user base for 88 countries in 6 continents are covered in this report.

The report is also forecasting the global smartphone user population penetration to figure out the ratio of smartphone ownership out of population and the global smartphone user household penetration to understand the propotion of active users per every single household for 88 countries through 2020.


July 17, 2014 18:25 nmawston

According to our WSS (Smartphones) research service, BlackBerry smartphone shipments fell sharply worldwide during Q2 2014. The Canadian vendor continued to struggle in all regions worldwide. However, cost-cutting and inventory destocking helped BlackBerry to trim its financial losses to the lowest level for over a year. A partnership with Amazon Appstore also improved its services portfolio and there are tentative signs that BlackBerry may finally stabilize in the second half of this year.


July 17, 2014 18:14 nmawston

Mozille announced today that its Firefox OS is now available on 7 smartphone models at 5 major carriers in 15 countries worldwide. Latin America and Europe are the current regions of availability, with Asia next on the roadmap.

Clients of our Wireless Smartphone Strategies (WSS) service can download our global Firefox smartphone sales, installed base and user base forecasts across 88 countries through 2018 at this weblink.