Whereas international smartphone gross sales to finish customers had been down four.6 % within the fourth quarter of 2017, Samsung retained its high spot with 18.2 % share, Gartner stated on Thursday.

The South Korean big although noticed a year-on-year unit decline of three.6 % within the fourth quarter of 2017, however this didn’t forestall it from defending its high international smartphone vendor place in opposition to Apple.

“Regardless of the beginning of a slowdown in gross sales of Samsung’s Galaxy S8 and S8+, the general success of these fashions has helped Samsung enhance total common promoting worth,” Gartner said.

Samsung is about to announce the successors to its Galaxy collection of smartphones on the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona over the subsequent weekend.

“The launches of its subsequent flagship gadgets are prone to increase Samsung’s smartphone gross sales within the first quarter of 2018,” the report stated.

General, the worldwide smartphone gross sales hit almost 408 million items within the fourth quarter — a 5.6 % decline over the fourth quarter of 2016.

That is the primary year-on-year decline since Gartner began monitoring the worldwide smartphone market in 2004.

Two primary elements led to the autumn within the fourth quarter of 2017.

“First, upgrades from function telephones to smartphones have slowed down because of a scarcity of high quality “ultra-low-cost” smartphones and customers preferring to purchase high quality function telephones,” stated Anshul Gupta, Analysis Director at Gartner.

“Second, alternative smartphone customers are selecting high quality fashions and protecting them longer, lengthening the alternative cycle of smartphones,” he added.

Whereas Apple’s market share stabilised within the fourth quarter of 2017 in comparison with the identical quarter in 2016, iPhone gross sales fell 5 %.

“Apple was in a unique place this quarter than it was 12 months earlier than,” stated Gupta.

The iPhone maker had three new smartphones – the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X – but its efficiency within the quarter was overshadowed by two elements.

“First, the later availability of the iPhone X led to gradual upgrades to iPhone eight and eight Plus, as customers waited to strive the dearer mannequin,” famous Gupta.

“Second, part shortages and manufacturing capability constraints preceded an extended supply cycle for the iPhone X, which returned to regular by early December 2017. We anticipate good demand for the iPhone X to possible convey a delayed gross sales increase for Apple within the first quarter of 2018,” the Gartner government added.

Huawei and Xiaomi had been the one smartphone distributors to realize a year-on-year unit development (7.6 and 79 %, respectively) and grew market share within the quarter.

With Huawei’s new smartphone additions within the quarter, together with Mate 10 Lite, Honor 6C Pro and Enjoy 7S, the seller broadened the enchantment of its smartphones.

Xiaomi’s aggressive smartphone portfolio, consisting of its Mi and Redmi fashions, helped speed up its development within the rising Asia/Pacific (APAC) market. It additionally helped Xiaomi win again misplaced share in China.

In 2017 as a complete, smartphone gross sales to finish customers totalled over 1.5 billion items – a rise of two.7 % from 2016.

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