Apple Occupies The Top Spot In Smartphone Shipments 2023, Dethrones Samsung After 12 Years

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Even though global smartphone shipments have dropped 3.2 percent year over year in 2023, Apple has taken the top position, beating Samsung to the punch. According to data from the International Data Corporation, 2023 marked the lowest full-year volume (in terms of smartphone shipments) in a decade, “driven largely by macroeconomic challenges and elevated inventory early in the year.” However, the growth in the year’s second half cemented the expected recovery for 2024.

Here’s What IDC’s Latest Report Says About Apple’s Growth

Amid the rise and fall of smartphone shipments, Apple has managed to dethrone Samsung, which has been at the top of the market for the last 12 years. “Not only is Apple the only player in the top 3 to show positive growth annually, but also bags the number 1 spot annually for the first time ever,” mentions the report. It also adds that Apple’s ongoing success and resilience is in large part due to the increasing trend of premium devices, which now represent over 20 percent of the smartphone market.

Apple's top position in Q4 2023 smartphone shipments

Apple Seems To Have Cracked The International Market, Including India

We believe that the aggressive discounts, readily available EMIs, and trade-in offers have a lot to do with Apple’s performance in India, which, per the company, became the fifth-largest market for iPhones in the second quarter of 2023. The ongoing discounts on the iPhone 15 should also fuel sales in January when competitors like Samsung and OnePlus are about to reveal their yearly flagships. Moreover, the company has a big hand in shifting Indian consumers’ focus from the mid-range to the top-tier segment.

Here’s How Each Company’s Shipments Stand Next To Each Other

Apple's top position in yearly smartphone shipments 2023

Coming back to the IDC report, Apple shipped over 234 million units in 2023, capturing 20.1 percent of the market. It is also the only company to register a 3.7 percent year-over-year growth in shipments. Coming in second place is Samsung, which sold 226.6 million units, capturing 19.4 percent of the market. The company’s shipments fell by 13.6 percent over the last year, which indicates that it needs a change in strategy to come back at the top.

Xiaomi Occupies The Third Spot, Oppo Comes At Fourth

Securing the third position, with a 4.7 percent decline in year-over-year shipments, is Xiaomi, which shipped 145.9 million units across the world. Its market share remains at 12.5 percent. Oppo secured the fourth position on the list, shipping about 103.1 units to capture 8.8 percent of the market. However, the brand also witnessed a 9.9 percent decline compared to last year. Last but not least, Transsion occupied the fifth position, capturing 8.1 percent of the market by shipping over 94 million units.

All the other companies, including Vivo, OnePlus, Motorola, Google, etc., sold 361.8 million units in 2023. The total number of smartphones that went out last year was a whopping 1.16 billion, 3.2 percent less than in 2022. This indicates a saturation in the market, which could be a reason for the lack of innovation and increasing smartphone prices. Nonetheless, it’s surprising to see Apple, which only makes flagship smartphones, at the top of the smartphone market.

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Shikhar MehrotraShikhar Mehrotra
A tech enthusiast at heart, Shikhar Mehrotra has been writing news since college for an undergraduate degree in Journalism and Mass Communication. Over the last four years, he has worked with several national and international publications, including Republic World, and ScreenRant, writing news, how-to explainers, smartphone comparisons, reviews, and list-type articles. When he is not working, Shikhar likes to click pictures, make videos for his YouTube channel, and watch the American sitcom Friends.

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