Samsung takes the top spot as smartphone sales tumble

Samsung has overtaken Apple in the global smartphone market share, with the manufacturer being the only one to achieve a quarter-on-quarter recovery, according to a Canalys report.

However, the market has suffered from a decline in shipments over the past year, and the latest figures reveal it hasn’t had a great start in early 2023.

Samsung took the top spot for smartphone shipments in the first quarter of 2023 (Q1 2023), with a market share of 22%. It is followed closely by Apple with 21%.

Xiaomi took third place with a market share of 11%, with Oppo and Vivo trailing behind with 10% and 8%, respectively.

A comparison of global smartphone market shares between Q1 2022 and Q1 2023 is summarised in the table below using Canalys’s data.

Worldwide smartphone shipment market share
Vendor Q1 2022 market share Q1 2023 market share
Samsung 24% 22%
Apple 18% 21%
Xiaomi 13% 11%
Oppo 9% 10%
Vivo 8% 8%
Other 28% 28%

It should be noted that Samsung’s victory is somewhat bittersweet as overall smartphone shipments fell 12% in Q1 2023.

However, Canalys analysis Sanyam Chaurasia says the decline fell within expectations.

“The smartphone market’s decline in the first quarter of 2023 was within expectations throughout the industry,” says Chaurasia.

“The local macroeconomic conditions continued to hinder vendors’ investments and operations in several markets.”

“Despite price cuts and heavy promotions from vendors, consumer demand remained sluggish, particularly in the low-end segment due to high inflation affecting consumer confidence and spending.”

He adds that slowed end-user demand triggered a wave of destocking across the smartphone supply chain.

“To maintain a low level of sell-in volume, vendors continued to use cautious production techniques, which had a long-term negative impact on the component supply chain’s operational performance,” says Chaurasia.

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Samsung takes the top spot as smartphone sales tumble