Apple Inc. finally managed to achieve its ultimate goal; capturing the top spot in the largest smartphone market of the world i.e. China. Since 2011, for the very first time, the company reached the top, which vaulted it into a tie for worldwide domination. The larger-screen iPhones, which the company launched in September of 2014, enabled it to gain ground on South Korean manufacturer, Samsung Electronics. In the fourth quarter, the number of smartphones shipped globally by both manufacturers was 74.5 million, giving both companies a market share of 19.6%. The third position was taken up by Lenovo Grp. Ltd that had acquired Motorola Mobility and its share amounted to 6.5% of the market.
The area of the larger screens has been pioneered by Samsung so it was a huge blow to the company when the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus were launched in markets where a bigger device is desired by consumers for performing the role of both tablet computer and phone. In the world’s largest market, which is China, the company surged into first place after overtaking Xiaomi Corp, the local vendor, which fell into sixth place in the world smartphone market. According to analysts, the golden age of Xiaomi is reaching its end because Apple and Lenovo-Motorola have upped their game all over the world including China.
In the quarter, there was a 31% increase in the global smartphone shipments, which reached 380.1 million units whereas a record 1.3 billion smartphones were shipped in the whole of 2014. According to statistics, it was in the fourth quarter of 2011 that Apple had been the biggest vendor of smartphones globally and it has regained the same position now. A 38% surge was announced in the net income of the Cupertino, California based firm in the quarter for December 2014 while there was a 27% decline in the earnings of Samsung Electronics that makes devices based on the Android operating system.
The maker of Galaxy devices also reported a 10% decline in its global market share as more and more buyers were captured by Huawei Technologies and Lenovo. During the December quarter, Shenzhen, China’s Huawei came fourth in the global market and was followed by LG Electronics on fifth position whereas Xiaomi held the sixth one. Last year, there was a 7% increase in mobile shipments, even those with limited internet access as a total of 1.8 billion units were shipped.
For a 22.4% share, about 405 million units were shipped by Samsung Electronics, with an 11% share was Microsoft Corp’s Nokia and a 10.6% share was taken up by Apple Inc. The new iPhones turned out to be immensely useful for Apple in China as the iPhone maker was able to double its smartphone share from 9% to 17% and this allowed the company to move ahead of Xiaomi that only had 13% share. Lenovo and Huawei claimed the third and fourth position while Samsung was left with fifth with 9% market share in the Chinese market.