Apple Overtakes Samsung As #1 Smartphone Seller in 2023 with 20.1% Market Share

In 2023, Apple secured its position as the leading global smartphone vendor, surpassing Samsung Electronics and acquiring a significant 20.1% market share, according to a report from the International Data Corporation.

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Globally, Apple Inc. was able to ship 234.6 Million iPhone units in 2023, giving it 20.1% Market Share for the year; A record-high for the Cupertino company.

This shift marked the conclusion of Samsung's 12-year dominance, with the company concluding the year with a 19.4% share. Noteworthy competitors following Samsung included Chinese brands Xiaomi, Oppo, and Transsion, as revealed by preliminary data from IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker.

The change in leadership can be traced back to a challenging year characterized by subdued consumer interest in smartphone upgrades. Economic uncertainties and high inflation prompted consumers to choose more budget-friendly handset options. Furthermore, a slower-than-expected recovery in China, the world's largest smartphone market, played a role in the overall decline in phone sales.

Despite the market downturn, Apple and Transsion, recognized for Tecno, Infinix, and itel brands, experienced notable sales growth among the top five smartphone vendors. Despite the market contracting by 3.2% to 1.17 billion units, Apple and Transsion emerged as the victors.

Nabila Popal, research director at IDC's Worldwide Tracker team, emphasized that while low-end Android players like Transsion and Xiaomi exhibited strong growth in the latter half of 2023, Apple stood out as the primary beneficiary of the shifting landscape.

Samsung's strategic focus on the mid- to high-end market segments for profitability resulted in a loss of share in the low-end segment, according to Amber Liu of research firm Canalys. Meanwhile, Apple encountered challenges in China from resurgent competitor Huawei and budget-friendly Chinese brands, prompting the iPhone maker to introduce discounts of up to 5% on select models to attract customers.


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