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Apr 12, 2001
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Apple overtook Samsung to become the world's largest smartphone vendor in the fourth quarter of 2016 as shipments reached 439 million units.

According to independent research firm Strategy Analytics, global smartphone shipments grew 3 percent annually to hit a record 1.5 billion units in 2016. Apple shipped 78.3 million handsets in the fourth quarter of the year - around 800,000 more units than Samsung - allowing it to recapture its number one position with 18 percent global smartphone market share.

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Apple shipped 78.3 million smartphones worldwide and captured 18 percent marketshare in Q4 2016, rising a steady 5 percent annually from 74.8 million units in Q4 2015. This was the iPhone's best performance for over a year, as Apple capitalized on Samsung's recent missteps. Samsung shipped 77.5 million smartphones worldwide in Q4 2016, dipping 5 percent annually from 81.3 million units in Q4 2015.
Bolstered by the popularity of the iPhone 7 and particularly the iPhone 7 Plus, Apple's 5 percent increase in shipments year-over-year helped it secure a 17.8 percent share of the global smartphone market, narrowly beating Samsung's share of 17.7 percent, which was negatively impacted by the company's Note7 battery fiasco. Samsung captured 21 percent share for the full year, marking its lowest level since 2011.

Despite the Q4 results, Samsung maintained first position in annualized figures, with 309 million units shipped worldwide in 2016, compared to Apple's 215 million units. Despite struggling in China against rivals like OPPO, Huawei's impressive overseas performance helped it maintain third position, with a record 10 percent global smartphone market share in Q4 2016 - the first time the company has reached double figures - while OPPO held on to fourth position and grew 99 percent annually to capture a record 7 percent global smartphone market share.

The research comes one day after Apple released its Q1 2017 financial results, in which it reported record results over what corresponds to the fourth calendar quarter of 2016. Cook was bullish on the iPhone's future, and talked up the smartphone's importance across a range of segments, including home automation, health, CarPlay, and enterprise. "I think the smartphone is still in the early innings of the game," Cook said during the earnings call. "App developers are still inventing and there are some exciting things in the pipeline that I feel really good about."

Article Link: Apple Overtakes Samsung As World's Top Smartphone Vendor in Q4 2016
 

AllieNeko

macrumors 65816
Sep 25, 2003
1,004
57
Apple and Samsung have different release cycles. For Apple to NOT exceed Samsung in Q4 regularly, shows just how much bigger Samsung is.

The bigger question is - does it matter? Selling more **** will always get you more volume. Samsung's sales lead in units isn't due to flagship phones competing directly with the iPhone. It's due to the millions and millions of unbearably terrible rubbish phones they sell. At the flagship level, where Apple competes, they've always blown Samsung away.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
68,314
35,936
Boston
Can't say that this is surprising news. The ball is in Samsung's court for the next Note phone
 

dmylrea

macrumors 68040
Sep 27, 2005
3,481
4,605
Very impressive considering the fact that Apple only sells high end smartphones while Samsung's sales are mostly made up of low to mid range devices.
Of course you can supply the evidence to back this up? Plus, I would not consider the iPhone SE a "high end smartphone".

Let's keep in mind that all this "rah! rah!" is about Q4 2016, the same time the iPhone 7 came out, and practically every carrier was giving them away for FREE with some sort of trade in. Who doesn't want a free iPhone?
 

dmylrea

macrumors 68040
Sep 27, 2005
3,481
4,605
It's not clickbait, it's exactly what it says. The title states Apple overtakes Samsung as top smartphone vendor in Q4 2016. The numbers show Apple sold 78.3 million in Q4 '16, whilst Samsung sold 77.5 million in Q4 '16. 78.3 is more than 77.5.

What the article doesn't make clear is that the margin between Apple and Samsung for the quarter is extremely thin, and the fact that Samsung wasn't able to sell one of their flagship phones, I'd say that Samsung actually blew Apple out of the water considering that handicap.

Had the "Note 7 fiasco" not happened, I'd guess this article would be telling a much different story.
 

69Mustang

macrumors 604
Jan 7, 2014
7,861
14,967
In between a rock and a hard place
I don't think anybody a decade ago could have predicted the sales volume of the iPhone. The Nokia 3310 family sold 126 million units in its lifetime. Apple are nearly doubling that number annually. It's mindboggling.
Not mind boggling at all. Nokia was a beast. That 3310 was from 17 years ago. The year before that they sold 150 million of the 3210. They sold 250 million of the 1100 in 2003 and another 250 million of the 1100 bar style in 2005. What's mind boggling is Nokia's descent from market leader to an afterthought in such a short time. Android murdered that company.
 

69Mustang

macrumors 604
Jan 7, 2014
7,861
14,967
In between a rock and a hard place
What the article doesn't make clear is that the margin between Apple and Samsung for the quarter is extremely thin, and the fact that Samsung wasn't able to sell one of their flagship phones, I'd say that Samsung actually blew Apple out of the water considering that handicap.

Had the "Note 7 fiasco" not happened, I'd guess this article would be telling a much different story.
Not really. They most likely would have sold more than Apple but it wouldn't have been a blown out of the water scenario. The Note had a great reputation and a dedicated following. It didn't have spectacular sales on the level of Sammy's S series. Regardless of what Samsung did or didn't do, it's pretty hard to discount what Apple did in the 4th quarter. 78 million is 78 million no matter how you slice it.
 

mcdspncr

macrumors regular
Jul 2, 2011
159
198
Sure hope Apple is able to put together an exciting, innovative phone for the 10th anniversary edition this year. They might be able to keep up this growth (and stop disappointing their core customers)!
 

Dave245

macrumors G3
Sep 15, 2013
8,524
6,240
I just boggles my mind that iPhone 7, basically iPhone 6 v3, is so popular. No wonder Apple keeps releasing the same phones if people keep buying them.

It's a much better phone than the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, i upgraded from my iPhone 6 Plus to the 7 Plus. Depending on what Apple announce later this year i'm likely to upgrade to the iPhone 8 as well.
 
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