Apple Continues to Lose Smartphone Share, Gain Mobile Phone Share in 4Q 2013

by

Even as Apple's share of the smartphone market declined in the fourth quarter of 2013, the rise of smartphones to replace more basic feature phones has allowed the company to continue increasing its share of the overall mobile phone market, according to new numbers from research firm IDC.

According to IDC, yearly smartphone shipments topped one billion for the first time in 2013 and now represent 55 percent of mobile phone shipments, up from under 42 percent in 2012. The fourth quarter alone saw smartphone capture over 58 percent of the overall mobile phone market.

idc_4Q13_smartphones

Worldwide smartphone shipments in 4Q13 in millions of units (Source: IDC)

For full-year 2013, Apple's iPhone sales increased by 12.9 percent over 2012, trailing the broader smartphone industry's growth rate of 38.4 percent. Apple was, however, still able to retain firm control of second place in the rankings behind Samsung even as Apple's market share fell from 18.7 percent to 15.3 percent. It was a similar story for the fourth quarter on its own, with Apple's 6.7 percent growth in shipments trailing the broader market and causing the company's share to dip from 20.9 percent to 17.9 percent.

Apple posted record shipment volume during 4Q13, driven primarily by the addition of multiple countries offering the iPhone 5S and 5C, and sustained demand from its initial markets that saw these models launch at the end of 3Q13. Still, Apple had the lowest year-on-year increase of all the leading vendors. Now that Apple has finally arrived at China Mobile, it remains to be seen how much Apple will close the gap against Samsung in 2014.

But when looking at the overall mobile phone market, Apple performs much better due to its exclusive focus on the rapidly growing smartphone segment. According to IDC's numbers, Apple easily outpaced overall market growth of 4.8 percent for 2013 and 0.9 percent for the fourth quarter alone, boosting Apple to an 8.4 percent share for the full year and 10.4 percent for fourth quarter. Apple continues to sit firmly in third place among all mobile phone manufacturers behind Samsung and a rapidly falling Nokia.

idc_4Q13_phones

Worldwide mobile phone shipments in 4Q13 in millions of units (Source: IDC)

Just yesterday, Apple released its earnings report for the fourth quarter (first fiscal quarter of 2014), revealing fairly strong overall performance but weaker than expected iPhone numbers that helped drive Apple's stock down nearly 8 percent at the opening of trading today. And with the iPhone accounting for 56 percent of Apple's revenue for the quarter, it's clear the device continues to be the main factor in measuring Apple's success.

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
88 months ago
Of course Apple's marketshare will get smaller.. as more and more Android phones are sold. Apple cannot compete with raw sale of units.

What is important is healthy -
* iPhone sales, which we saw yesterday.
* healthy iOS eco system

Marketshare data is one data point, out of many.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
88 months ago
ITT: armchair CEOs telling how Apple should be run
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
88 months ago

Apple should just not call the iPhone a smartphone but something like
"a phone that people love to use and that gets software updates for at least 3 year"

They would have 100% market share in this category (what my point is, is that most of the android phones out there are just better feature phones and not used for anything smart)


Because that would have meaning?
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
88 months ago

I read an article that looked at the smartphone market and divided it into several tiers. In the "premium" tier, defined as over $400 phones, Apple has something over 60% of the world market share. My point is that we saturate smartphone penetration and "feature" phones are history, we need to change the conversation. Apple will probably never compete in the mid or low end, so diluting their market share with those numbers does not make sense. Apple is increasing sales and market shares in the area they care about -- the premium smartphones (although profit per phone is down slightly).

This is the same for Porche or BMW -- yes they are losing market share to the overall car market, but in the premium sports car market they rule. And that's all they care about.

Another poor car analogy. Predictable :)

I'm pretty sure Apple cares about marketshare - not just marketshare of the "high end" market. Do they care about that - yes - but as a part of the whole pie.

Any attempt to imply otherwise is pure rationalization.

p.s. Apple is doing very well marketshare wise. And there's room to grow (IE - increase) which is important. Even more important - they are very profitable.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
88 months ago
I read an article that looked at the smartphone market and divided it into several tiers. In the "premium" tier, defined as over $400 phones, Apple has something over 60% of the world market share. My point is that we saturate smartphone penetration and "feature" phones are history, we need to change the conversation. Apple will probably never compete in the mid or low end, so diluting their market share with those numbers does not make sense. Apple is increasing sales and market shares in the area they care about -- the premium smartphones (although profit per phone is down slightly).

This is the same for Porche or BMW -- yes they are losing market share to the overall car market, but in the premium sports car market they rule. And that's all they care about.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
88 months ago



Another poor car analogy. Predictable :)

I'm pretty sure Apple cares about marketshare - not just marketshare of the "high end" market. Do they care about that - yes - but as a part of the whole pie.

Any attempt to imply otherwise is pure rationalization.

p.s. Apple is doing very well marketshare wise. And there's room to grow (IE - increase) which is important. Even more important - they are very profitable.


Market share is a look at the entire market to see how each company is ranked.

I'm sure all companies think about their individual market share among everyone else... but it's never a primary focus. It can't be. Companies can only control themselves... not everyone else.

Apple made the conscious decision to only sell expensive smartphones. They're certainly allowed to do that.

Other companies choose to sell across a full range of prices... including cheaper smartphones. And that appeals to a broader base of consumers.

The funny thing is... Apple is still the #2 smartphone vendor by units sales... despite only selling expensive smartphones. And you're right... they are very profitable.

And that's key here. What good is selling a bunch of phones to gain market share if it doesn't make you any money to keep your doors open?

These are businesses after all. You can't pay your bills with market share.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

New Photos Offer Better Look at iPhone 12 Color Options

Tuesday October 20, 2020 2:34 am PDT by
As we wait for the iPhone 12 review embargo to lift later today, more pictures are circulating of the devices in real-world lighting conditions, providing a better look at the different colors available. Leaker DuanRui has shared images on Twitter of the iPhone 12 in white, black, blue, green, and (PRODUCT)RED. The black and white colors are similar to the iPhone 11 colors, but the other...

iPhone 12 Pro in Graphite and iPhone 12 in Blue Shown Off in Unboxing Videos

Monday October 19, 2020 8:20 am PDT by
While the iPhone 12 Pro does not launch until Friday, we now have an early unboxing video of the device courtesy of Twitter account DuanRui, providing a closer look at the shiny new flat-edge design and sleek Graphite color option. Ben Geskin re-uploaded the unboxing video to YouTube, which we've embedded below: Geskin has also uploaded an unboxing video of the iPhone 12 in Blue: ...

Apple Releases iPadOS and iOS 14.1 With Multiple Bug Fixes Ahead of iPhone 12 Launch

Tuesday October 20, 2020 10:06 am PDT by
Apple today released iOS and iPadOS 14.1, the first major updates to the iOS and iPadOS 14 operating system updates that were released in September. iOS and iPadOS 14.1 come a week after Apple released the golden master versions of the updates to developers. The iOS 14.1 update can be downloaded for free and it is available on all eligible devices over-the-air in the Settings app. To access...

Watch: iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro Unboxing Videos and First Impressions

Tuesday October 20, 2020 6:05 am PDT by
Apple's embargo has lifted for iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro reviews. In addition to our detailed review roundups for each device, we've rounded up over a dozen unboxing videos and first impressions below. iPhone 12 in Blue on left and iPhone 12 Pro in Pacific Blue on right via Engadget Key new features of the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro include a flat-edge design, 5G support, a much faster A14 ...

Gold Version of iPhone 12 Pro Apparently Has a More Fingerprint Resistant Stainless Steel Frame

Tuesday October 20, 2020 11:56 am PDT by
iPhone 12 Pro reviews hit the web today, and one of the more interesting tidbits came from TechCrunch's Matthew Panzarino, who revealed that the Gold version of the device apparently has a more fingerprint resistant coating applied to the stainless steel frame. From his review:Most of the iPhone 12 Pro finishes still use a physical vapor deposition process for edge coating. But the new gold...

Photographer Austin Mann Tests the iPhone 12 Pro's Camera

Wednesday October 21, 2020 4:14 am PDT by
Travel photographer Austin Mann usually performs an in-depth review of new iPhone models to test their camera performance in real-world scenarios. To test Apple's new iPhone 12 Pro, Mann traveled to Glacier National Park, Montana. Mann focused on some of the biggest camera upgrades with the iPhone 12 Pro, including the upgraded Wide lens, Ultra Wide Night mode, and LiDAR autofocus, across a...

iPhone 12 Pro Max Has Smaller 3,687 mAh Battery According to Regulatory Filing

Tuesday October 20, 2020 8:48 pm PDT by
Apple's new iPhone 12 Pro Max is equipped with a 3,687 mAh battery, which is around 7% less capacity than the 3,969 mAh battery in the iPhone 11 Pro Max, according to a regulatory filing published by TENAA, the Chinese equivalent of the FCC. The regulatory filing, spotted by MacRumors, also lists the iPhone 12 Pro Max with 6GB of RAM as seen in benchmark results last week. Apple has filed ...

5G Drains iPhone 12 Battery 20% Faster Than 4G in Benchmark

Wednesday October 21, 2020 3:17 am PDT by
After the first reviews for the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro emerged yesterday, a new report by Tom's Guide reveals the extent of battery life reductions when using 5G. The report outlines a test wherein the iPhone surfs the web continuously at 150 nits of screen brightness, launching a new site every 30 seconds until the battery drains. Interestingly, the test was run on an iPhone 12 and...

Hands-On With Apple's iPhone 12 and 12 Pro MagSafe Cases

Tuesday October 20, 2020 1:33 pm PDT by
Apple's iPhone 12 and 12 Pro are launching this Friday, and ahead of that release date, Apple is shipping out various accessories like the MagSafe charger and MagSafe cases. Yesterday we took a look at the MagSafe charger, and today our MagSafe case came in the mail, so we thought we'd take another look at the charger to see how it works with the case and just how strong the case magnets are. S ...

Reliable Leaker Suggests AirTags 'Coming Soon' in Two Different Sizes

Tuesday October 20, 2020 1:53 am PDT by
Apple's rumored AirTags Bluetooth tracking devices could launch imminently and will be available in two size options, based on new tweets from cryptic-but-reliable leaker L0vetodream. In typical enigmatic style, the leaker first tweeted this morning that a "big one" and a "small one" are "coming soon," but withheld what they were referring to. However that was followed an hour later with the ...