Chinese manufacturers Huawei and ZTE pull ahead in smartphone sales
Erin Lodi | Published: Jan 25, 2013 at 19:22 UTC5
As industry analysts report on growth in the mobile phone market today, it's clear that Chinese manufactures are making significant headway.
"The fact that Huawei and ZTE now find themselves among the Top 5 smartphone vendors marks a significant shift for the global market," noted Ramon Llamas, research manager with IDC's Mobile Phone team. "Both companies have grown volumes by focusing on the mass market, but in recent quarters they have turned their attention toward higher-end devices."
We saw evidence of this trend at the recent Consumer Electronics Show where both Huawei and ZTE debuted 5-inch format 13-megapixel devices with 1080p screens, the Ascend D2 and Grand S, respectively. IDC reports that Huawei took the third spot amongst top smartphone vendors in the last quarter of 2012 with 4.9 percent market share; ZTE was fifth with 4.3 percent. Sony fell in between at 4.5 percent, while Samsung took the top spot with 29 percent market share and Apple close behind with 21 percent.
Overall the global mobile phone market grew by just 1.2 percent in 2012, but smartphone shipments are accounting for an increasingly larger percentage of the total mobile phone market as global smartphone shipments grew by 44 percent annually. Over 700 million smartphones shipped worldwide in 2012.