Tuesday, 29 January 2019 07:31

Apple leads 'premium' smartphone market with Samsung and Huawei

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Apple leads 'premium' smartphone market with Samsung and Huawei Pixabay

Apple continues to lead the premium smartphone market — defined as devices priced above US$400 — followed by Samsung, according to figures for 2018 from the analyst firm Counterpoint Research.

Apple took 51% of this premium segment globally in 2018, followed by Samsung (22%) and Huawei (0%), according to Counterpoint's Market Pulse report for December 2018.

The company said in a blog post that the global market for premium smartphones was continuing to grow much faster than the overall market, with growth in 2018 being driven by Apple, Samsung, Huawei, OPPO, vivo and OnePlus, with brand diversity in this space increasing.

Within the premium space, Counterpoint said the US$800-plus segment had exhibited the fastest growth. In 2017, devices that commanded this price comprised 8% of the total premium market, but after the iPhone X was launched its share grew. Three devices - the iPhone XSm and XS Max, the Pixel 3 XL and the Samsung Note 9 were all priced well above the US$800 figure.

Counterpoint claimed that users appeared to be willing to spend more to buy a device but were inclined to use it for much longer than before.

counterpoint smartphone

Other key findings:

  • The US$800+ segment was a newly created category by Apple, and it grew the fastest. Apple clearly dominated with more than 80% share in the $800+ ultra-premium price band.
  • The affordable premium segment, the US$400-US$600 price-band, was actually the largest volume segment in total premium sales. Although Apple still leads in this segment, the biggest winner was OnePlus.
  • OnePlus remains one of the fastest growing brands in the US$400-US$600 segment. The success of OnePlus in India drove the overall premium smartphone shipments in the country to a record number in a single year. The brand is likely to grow as it broadens its reach in the European and US markets.

Graphic: courtesy Cointerpoint

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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