Of late, Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) investors have been particularly concerned about the falling unit sales of iPhones, the company’s primary revenue driver. Less expensive high-end smartphones, especially those coming from China, have been cited as a major reason for customers being tempted away from the Silicon Valley giant.
However, market share data reveal iPhone’s popularity has not been materially impacted, even in Asia. According to statcounter GlobalStats, Apple’s mobile device market share in Asia rose from 12.6% in December last year to 16.5% in June.
Apple also outstripped Chinese major Xiaomi during this period, becoming the second-largest brand in Asia after Samsung.
Ironically, Apple’s exploits in Asia were driven by its prime rival China. During the same period, Apple’s market share in China rose from 15.9% to 20.7%. Apple trails only Huawei, the mobile vendor leader in China with a market share of close to 30%.
Meanwhile, the story has been different in both North America and Europe. Even though Apple enjoys over 50% market share in North America, there has been little expansion happening. In Europe, meanwhile, the market share has dipped by about a percentage point during the six months.
iPhone SE could be a saving grace
Even though smartphone sales were generally hurt by the global pandemic and the shelter-at-home orders, research firm Counterpoint said Apple and Samsung were among the better performers, thanks to high online presence.
The Counterpoint report added that sales of iPhone SE, launched in April, is stronger than initially expected and is driving a high rate of Android to iOS switching among customers. Given its low price and high-end A13 Bionic chip, it makes a sensible choice for budget-conscious buyers. Counterpoint’s North America Research Director, Jeff Fieldhack said:
“US smartphone sales picked up when the first stimulus checks were received by consumers during the back half of April. Soon after, carrier stores and national retail began opening again which further helped the recovery. There was also a bit of pent-up demand created by the weeks of store closures.”
According to the report, iPhone sales fell 23% in the second quarter of this year, versus a 10% fall by Samsung.
In fiscal 2019, Apple stopped reporting iPhone unit sales during the quarterly results, in an attempt to drive investor sentiments away from the declining figures. Apple believes that its massive fan following, as well as a gradual increase in average selling prices, should offset any weakness on the sales side.
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