Almost all of the top-selling smartphones from 2019 were either Apple or Samsung devices.
This is according to Counterpoint Research’s Market Pulse report which detailed last year’s top 10 best-selling smartphones from around the world.
With six iPhone models, Apple had the most smartphones in the top 10, while Samsung followed with three Galaxy A smartphones on the list.
The iPhone XR continued its 2018 success and finished the year in the number one spot, accounting for 3% of all smartphone sales.
Claiming 2.1% of global sales, the iPhone 11 was the second best-selling smartphone of 2019, despite only being available for four months. Counterpoint Research attributed this to the holiday sales boom.
Samsung’s emphasis on a solid mid-range offering proved to be a good move, as the Galaxy A50, A10, and A20 featured at third, fourth, and seventh place respectively.
Top smartphones by region
While Apple dominated the Northern American (NAM) market, Samsung took the top five spots for the Middle East and African (MEA) region.
Apple claimed an impressive share of nearly 30% in the NAM region, with the iPhone XR managing the only double-figure percentage of any smartphone in any region at 12%.
In MEA, Samsung’s Galaxy budget and mid-range line-up reigned supreme.
In order, the best-selling smartphones in this region were the Galaxy A10, A2 Core, A50, A20, and A10s.
Huawei is absent
Despite being the second-largest smartphone maker in the world, Huawei was notably absent from most of the lists.
Even in its home country of China, last year’s flagship P30 only came in fifth place, preceded by models from OPPO and Vivo.
The company has been hit with a trade ban by the US, which meant that it was cut off from agreements with several of its partners.
This means that its latest handsets are not able to officially support software licensed by US companies – such as Google’s Mobile Services.
This means that many of its upcoming smartphones – including the P40 – will likely not offer apps such as Gmail, Chrome, or YouTube pre-installed.
The company has reassured consumers that it is developing its own Huawei Mobile Services (HMS) to be a sufficient substitute for GMS.
It also said that Google’s apps will still be accessible in various ways thanks to the open-source Android operating system.
5G will drive sales in 2020
2019 was not a good year for smartphone sales overall.
Gartner revealed that the year saw a global sales decline of 2%, the first year-on-year decrease since 2008.
However, it predicted that due to more 5G networks being rolled out, smartphones capable of supporting the new network technology will become more popular.
It estimated that 2020 would boast 1.57 billion smartphone sales, reflecting a 3% year-on-year increase.
The graph below shows the top 10 best-selling smartphones of 2019, according to Counterpoint Research. The map underneath it indicates the top five smartphones sold in each region.