Canalys has done a market analysis on smartphone sales for the first quarter of 2020, and things aren’t looking too bright. With a few exceptions, all major manufacturers saw big declines in sales compared to the first quarter of 2019. Out of the top 5 present on the list, only Xiaomi and Vivo increased their sales and market share, but only slightly.
The decline in sales is understandable. Technology is not evolving as fast nowadays as it did 2 or three years ago and most people don’t feel the need to switch to a new smartphone yearly. Furthermore, high-end smartphone prices have increased year over year, with a $1000 flagship being the norm, instead of the exception. Make things worse, the Coronavirus pandemic meant putting many industries on hold and locking down people in their houses all over the world.
All this contributed to a 13% decrease in smartphone sales worldwide. Samsung and Huawei saw the biggest fall, each with a 17% decrease in sales while Apple saw 8%. This was not enough to shake the overall market share, with Samsung still being king, followed by Huawei and Apple. Xiaomi remained in 4th position with 11% market share (an increase from 8.9% last year) and on 5th we have Vivo with 8.9%, an increase from 7.5% in Q1 2019. It will be interesting to see what Q2 brings on the table. Maybe, if sales continue to decline, we can go back to the days when most high-end flagship smartphones were under $700.
Looking at the graph above, we can also see that this is the biggest drop in the past few years. 2019 saw some growth compared to 2018, but all was erased with this year’s downfall.