Apple overthrones Samsung as leading smartphone maker by volume

The 12-year dominance of the South Korean tech company has come to an end.

The American giant Apple has long led the smartphone market by revenue and profits, and in 2023 it toppled the South Korean tech company Samsung to become the world’s largest smartphone manufacturer by volume too.

Samsung’s 12-year reign as the industry leader in the number of devices sold globally has come to an end, according to the International Data Corporation (IDC), a provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets.

A recently-released smartphone market analysis by the IDC says that the manufacturer of iPhones shipped last year 234.6 million devices (+3.7% against the precedent year), compared to 226.6 million smartphones sold by Samsung. 

Samsung's Galaxy S22 Ultra2 and Apple's iPhone 13 ProMax have been the hits of the smartphone market.

The IDC notes that Apple’s performance is quite unusual for a year that was worst in a decade for the smartphone market; with shipments experiencing a 3.2% decline to 1.17 billion units. Apple's success is owed mainly to the fact that more consumers turned to higher-end models, because of their durability and features, bypassing sometimes the high price.

Samsung, on its part, focused more on the mid and high-end markets, but lost share in the lower-end market. Samsung reported a 13.6% decline in shipments last year and company officials hope to redress the financial situation with the launch of the state-of-the-art model Samsung S24.

Lower-end Chinese smartphone manufacturers such as Xiaomi, Oppo and Transsion have successfully grabbed control of the African smartphone market. At the same time, Huawei, another Chinese maker, regained the lion share of market in China and of cheaper Android handsets.

More to read:
15,000 bucks for users driving Bing crazy or cripple

Chinese iPhone sales posted last December dropped by 30% year-on-year, primarily because local brands such as Huawei and Xiaomi have delivered increasingly competitive and features-packed products.

Apple has felt very comfortable in China for a long time – the company also runs its biggest factory in that country, but things are changing. The American giant is under increasing pressure due to the Communist Party’s new trade laws, labor regulations, and Beijing’s tensions with Washington.

This is why Apple thinks of moving operations or open a new hub in India. It’s where iPhone 14 was produced instead of China.

The IDC analysis says that Apple claimed 20.1% market share in 2023 in terms of shipments, Samsung secured a 19.4% share, Xiaomi 12.5%, while Oppo and Transsion had 8.8% and 8.1%, respectively.

Interestingly, Transsion takes the credit for the biggest growth in shipments last year– more than 30.8%.

Nokia, LG and BlackBerry are still present in the market, but their share has diminished significantly and have been excluded from the top of leading smartphone manufacturers. The ranking of leading makers is dominated by Chinese.

Consumer preferences are moving overall towards the premium and high-end segments of market, according to IDC analytics


Follow us


Care to buy us a coffee? Do it via PalPal: office[at] Or perhaps you are interested in ads as a way to support us? Thank you anyway.