Huawei overtakes Apple in global smartphone sales

Chinese mobile maker reports 50.3% jump in sales as Apple shipments down 30.2%

The Huawei P30 Pro. The Chinese mobile maker now has 19% market share

The Huawei P30 Pro. The Chinese mobile maker now has 19% market share


Huawei overtook Apple to become the second largest seller of smartphones in the first quarter, marking the first time in seven years that Samsung and Apple haven’t held the two top spots.

Despite a wave of negative publicity linked to concerns over its 5G technology, the Chinese mobile maker grew sales by 50.3 per cent in the first three months of 2019 in a move that saw it edge nearer to market leader Samsung.

Huawei was the only leading mobile maker to record growth during the quarter with total smartphone sales declining 15 per cent year-over-year as replacement rates continue to slow in one of the world’s largest markets.

According to research company IDC, Huawei shipped 59.1 million units in the first quarter, as against 39.2 million a year earlier. It now has 19 per cent market share, as against Samsung, which remains top dog with 23.1 per cent of all shipments.

Samsung shipped 71.9 million smartphones in the first three months, an 8 per cent drop versus the 78.2 million shipments reported a year ago.

Apple sold 36.4 million smartphones, down 30.2 per cent from the 52.2 million shipped in the first quarter of 2018. It currently has 11.7 per cent market share, as against 15.7 per cent a year earlier.

“It is becoming increasingly clear that Huawei is laser focused on growing its stature in the world of mobile devices, with smartphones being its lead horse,” said Ryan Reith, program vice president with IDC’s Worldwide Mobile Device Trackers.

“The overall smartphone market continues to be challenged in almost all areas, yet Huawei was able to grow shipments by 50 per cent, not only signifying a clear number two in terms of market share but also closing the gap on the market leader Samsung. This new ranking of Samsung, Huawei, and Apple is very likely what we’ll see when 2019 is all said and done,” he added.