Samsung Reclaims the Top Spot as Smartphone, Xiaomi dethroned Apple

Samsung Reclaims the Top Spot as Smartphone, Xiaomi dethroned Apple
4 min read
30 October 2020

Every smartphone company suffered lackluster sales in Quarter 2 of this year due to the pandemic. However, the market is starting to return to normal and so do the smartphone sales. In fact, the demand for new smartphones is more than ever.

We have fresh data from IDC related to the smartphone shipments in the third quarter of this year which reveals that Samsung has managed to keep its top position in the worldwide smartphone ranking in terms of sales. They sold 80.4 million smartphones in Q3 up from 78.2 a year before. Huawei managed to take the second spot but their sales actually nosedived compared to last year. 51.9 million sales vs 66.6 a year before. We all know why this happened, US sanctions are taking a big toll on the company and with this rate, they might not even make it to the top 5 next year.

Top 5 Smartphone Companies, Worldwide Shipments, Market Share, and Year-Over-Year Growth, Q3 2020 (shipments in millions of units)


3Q20 Shipment Volumes

3Q20 Market Share

3Q19 Shipment Volumes

3Q19 Market Share

Year-Over-Year Change











































Source: IDC Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, Oct 29th, 2020

But the biggest shocker came from Xiaomi, who managed to dethrone Apple from the number 3 spot pushing Apple to number 4. This is the first time ever that Apple has slipped to 4th position in these rankings. Xiaomi saw a growth of 42 percent year over year which is massive. It seems Huawei users are shifting to Xiaomi and the company is doing everything they can to attract even more customers from Huawei.

What Huawei has managed to do successfully in recent years is to take high-quality Chinese smartphones under the global Android umbrella and challenge market-leaders like Samsung and Apple. Now that Huawei is no longer relevant in the smartphone industry, and as a result, they have left a huge gap in the market, Xiaomi is filling this void by following the same strategy as Huawei which is to make high-quality phones such as the Mi 10 Ultra to drive smartphone sales both home and abroad. Xiaomi is even taking digs at Huawei saying their phones have easy access to the google apps you use the most.

So if Huawei goes out, Xiaomi will likely be that company to fill their space. Now as for Apple, they sold 5 million fewer phones than last year and the primary reason for it is the iPhone 12 phones have been delayed. Usually, Apple launched their phones on September 11th but this year they delayed it by more than a month and that showed up on the graph, and they slipped to 4th position.

Coming back to Samsung, it certainly looks like they are on a roll, after regaining the number one spot in worldwide smartphone rankings, they even managed to beat Xiaomi in the Indian market thereby reclaiming that top spot there which they lost a year ago. Not only that, Samsung has posted its highest revenue ever in the history of the company at $59 billion in Quarter 3 of this year. 59 billion dollars in three months.

Samsung says they have seen a boost in their flagship sales that helped drive the revenue figures such as the Z Fold 2 and the Note 20 Ultra. Not only that their memory market saw an increase in demand as well mainly because of Huawei, which put in urgent orders ahead of US sanctions taking effect last month. Not only that, the Galaxy S20 series was the world's best-selling 5G smartphone in the first half of 2020 beating the likes of Mate 30 and P40 series from Huawei.

So all in all, it's been a great year for Samsung both in terms of sales and revenue. Xiaomi is also rising to take the spot left by Huawei, so it's going to be interesting to see what the next year is going to bring to the table for these companies. Let me know what do you think about all of this down in the comments.

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Den W. 3K
I'm a passionate tech enthusiast who loves diving into the world of software, programming, and tech reviews.
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