Samsung remained the world’s best-selling smartphone brand in the third quarter of 2021 but suffered a significant decline in sales while its rivals increased their market share.
That is according to Gartner’s report on smartphone sales in Q3 2021, which was released on Wednesday.
Garner senior research director, Anshul Gupta, said despite strong consumer demand, overall smartphone sales declined due to delayed product launches, longer delivery schedules, and insufficient inventory at the channel level.
Global smartphone shipments dropped from around 366.3 million during last year’s third quarter to 342.3 million this past quarter.
In the top 5, however, Samsung appeared to be the only big loser.
According to Gartner, the South Korean tech giant shipped just over 69 million smartphones between July 2021 and September 2021, almost 12 million less than in the third quarter of 2020.
That means its share of the market dropped from 22.1% to 20.2%.
Gartner said that positive foldable smartphone sales helped Samsung limit the damage.
Meanwhile, second-placed Apple increased shipments by almost 8 million despite component challenges, going from around 40.6 million in Q3 2020 to 48.5 million in Q3 2021.
Gartner attributed this surge to the iPhone 13’s new A15 processor, better battery life, and camera sensor improvements, as well as increased interest in 5G-capable handsets.
While Apple’s smartphone growth propelled it past Xiaomi, which was previously in second place, the latter also managed to increase its market share from 12.1% to 13%, thanks to a slight increase in shipments of around 80,000.
The other two brands in the top 5, Vivo and Oppo, managed healthy shipments and market share growth.
Vivo’s shipments jumped from just under 29.8 million to more than 36 million, while Oppo climbed from 29.9 to 33.6 million. As a result, Vivo captured 10.5% of the overall market share, whereas Oppo’s slice of the pie stood at 9.8%.
Brands outside the top 5 saw a decline from 38.4% market share to 32.3%, indicating that smaller companies took the biggest hit from the chip crunch, or consumers were simply more interested in the established brands.
The table below shows the Q3 2021 and Q3 2020 shipments of the world’s top 5 smartphone brands according to data from research firm Gartner.