updated 11:11 am EDT, Wed April 30, 2014
Lenovo, Huawei outperform smartphone market
Although Apple broke its own records in the first quarter by shipping 43.7 million iPhones, its rate of growth was below that of the smartphone industry as a whole and any of its biggest competitors, according to new IDC data. Year-over-year, Apple's units were up 16.8 percent. The smartphone industry grew 28.6 percent; Apple's biggest rival, Samsung, advanced 22 percent to 85 million units. While only managing 13.7 million and 12.9 million units, respectively, Huawei and Lenovo outperformed in terms of growth, with rates of 47.3 and 63.3 percent.
In terms of combined feature phone and smartphone shipments, Samsung remained on top despite a 0.3 percent dip to 108.9 million units. Apple may be poised to supplant Nokia as the number two phone maker though, as the latter dropped 18.4 percent to 50.5 million units, leaving just 7.2 million between the two. The overall mobile phone industry grew just 3.9 percent to 448.6 million units, leaving Apple and Huawei as the only two major vendors to outperform it. Huawei's combined shipments increased 33.8 percent to 14.6 million.
"[Apple] saw double-digit growth in Japan as well as across multiple developing markets, including Brazil, China, India, and Indonesia," IDC comments. "Still, this made for the lowest year-over-year improvement among the leading vendors. What remains to be seen is when -- not if -- Apple's rumored large-screen models will arrive on the market, filling a gap in the company's portfolio that has been exploited by the competition."