Is Global Smartphone Market Share Now Stable?

Is the global smartphone market now stable? With the rise of Chinese manufacturers and a slowing of growth rates for Apple, one might wonder.

Apple sales growth slowed by one percent in the second quarter of 2014, while Samsung sales dipped about four percent.

In the second quarter, Apple had 25 percent share, Samsung had 12 percent share and Huawei had seven percent.

That is almost a perfect example of the 4:2:1 pattern of share typical of stable markets. That might suggest the market is, in fact, stable, and that market share might not change from current patterns. 

Up to this point, Windows Mobile has been the wild card in the operating system market share battle, with a split among observers about how much share Windows would gain in the smartphone market. At least so far, Windows has not had the impact some had forecast.

To be sure, there is enough growth to support new challengers. 

The global smartphone market grew 23 percent year over year in the second quarter of 2014, a new single quarter record of 295.3 million shipments, according to International Data Corporation. 

The market grew 2.6 percent, quarter over quarter, with sales driven by purchases in developing markets. 

The issue is whether the manufacturer share of devices sold (separate from the issue of opertating system share) now is stable, or can change. 

Samsung sales dipped about four percent in the second quarter of 2014. Apple sales dropped about one percent as well. 

Huawei and Lenovo showed robust growth. 

Top Five Smartphone Vendors, Shipments, and Market Share, 2014Q2 Preliminary Results (Units in Millions) 
Vendor
2Q14 Shipment Volume
2Q14 Market Share
2Q13 Shipment Volume
2Q13 Market Share
2Q14/2Q13 Growth
1. Samsung
74.3
25.2%
77.3
32.3%
-3.9%
2. Apple
35.1
11.9%
31.2
13.0%
12.4%
3. Huawei
20.3
6.9%
10.4
4.3%
95.1%
4. Lenovo
15.8
5.4%
11.4
4.7%
38.7%
5. LG
14.5
4.9%
12.1
5.0%
19.8%
Others
135.3
45.8%
97.5
40.6%
38.7%
Total
295.3
100%
240.0
100%
23.1%

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