Apple iPhone’s Share of the Smartphone Market Declines

Apple’s iPhone.

Apple’s share of the smartphone market is declining, according to new data from IDC.

But that’s nothing for the company to worry about, added the research firm.

“The iOS decline in the second quarter aligns with the cyclicality of iPhone,” Ramon Llamas, Research Manager with IDC’s Mobile Phone team, wrote in a statement accompanying the data. “Without a new product launch since the debut of the iPhone 5 nearly a year ago, Apple’s market share was vulnerable to product launches from the competition. But with a new iPhone and revamped iOS coming out later this year, Apple is well-positioned to re-capture market share.”

Apple’s market-share in the second quarter of 2013 stood at 13.2 percent, versus 16.6 percent in the second quarter of 2012; however, its quarterly unit shipments increased from 26 million to 31.2 million. The discrepancy between the increased unit shipments and the declining share during that period is a reflection of the smartphone market’s explosive growth.

Between 2012 and 2013, Android’s market share increased from 69.1 percent to 79.3 percent. Microsoft’s Windows Phone also experienced some growth, as its market share increased from 3.1 percent to 3.7 percent; its unit shipments nearly doubled, from 4.9 million to 8.7 million. Despite a massive advertising campaign and quite a bit of press buzz for its new BlackBerry 10 smartphones, BlackBerry watched its share decline from 4.9 percent to 2.9 percent. Linux and Symbian watched their respective mobile-device market shares decline by double digits.

Samsung topped IDC’s list of top Android smartphone vendors, with 39.1 percent of the market in the second quarter of 2013, followed by (in descending order) LG, Lenovo, Huawei, ZTE, and others. Nokia dominated 81.6 percent of the market for Windows Phone—no surprise, given its neary-exclusive focus on the platform—followed by Samsung, HTC, and Huawei.

Apple is expected to release a new iPhone this fall—or maybe even two. Rumors have persisted for months that the company is hard at work on a cheaper smartphone, possibly with a plastic shell, which it will use to compete in the midrange smartphone market against Android. If those rumors prove correct, and that cheaper iPhone proves a hit, it has the potential to radically affect the contours of the smartphone market in subsequent quarters—especially if the next higher-end iPhone also resonates with audiences.

 

IDC’s market breakdown.

Images: Apple, IDC

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