Supervisor Elham AbolFateh
Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

Samsung Overtakes Apple as Leading Phone Maker

Mon 15 Apr 2024 | 05:24 PM
Israa Farhan

Preliminary data from the renowned research firm International Data Corporation (IDC) released on Sunday reveals that Samsung has surpassed Apple to reclaim its title as the world's foremost smartphone manufacturer. 

Last year, the South Korean tech giant relinquished its top spot to its US counterpart.

According to IDC's data, Apple experienced a decline of approximately 10% in smartphone shipments during the first quarter of 2024 due to heightened competition from Asian competitors. In the January-March period of this year, Apple shipped 50.1 million iPhones, down from 55.4 million units in the same period last year.

Despite a modest 0.7% decrease in sales growth, Samsung appears to be "in a stronger position overall" compared to recent quarters, as noted by IDC. The firm reported Samsung's market share at 20.8% in 1Q24, surpassing Apple's 17.3%.

Chinese smartphone manufacturers Xiaomi, Transsion, and OPPO follow Samsung and Apple to complete the top five smartphone makers list, according to IDC's research. Overall, global smartphone shipments saw a 7.8% year-on-year increase in 1Q24, as stated by the IDC.

Apple's sales decline follows its impressive performance in the fourth quarter of 2023, where it surpassed Samsung to become the world's leading phone maker, ending twelve years of dominance by the South Korean tech giant. Apple's success was attributed to the rising popularity of high-end devices.

However, the California-based company's sales slump this year is attributed to challenges in crucial markets, particularly China. Sales of iPhones in China, Apple's largest overseas market, plummeted by 24% year-on-year in the first six weeks of 2024, according to research firm Counterpoint. Some Chinese corporations and government agencies have restricted employees' use of Apple devices, mirroring US government restrictions on Chinese apps, citing alleged security concerns.

The trade tensions between Washington and Beijing, which have escalated since 2018, also contribute to Apple's challenges. Former US President Donald Trump initiated tariffs on Chinese imports, accusing Beijing of unfair trade practices and intellectual property theft.

President Joe Biden has maintained a tough stance on trade with China, retaining the tariffs imposed by his predecessor and implementing additional restrictions on access to innovative technologies, particularly in the artificial intelligence sector.

China has criticized Washington's policies, alleging they aim to hinder the development of the world's second-largest economy.