While the smartphone market largely remains a two-horse race between rivals Apple and Samsung, Chinese handset maker Huawei is placing increasing pressure on the industry giants after experiencing strong growth in China and Europe in 2015.
Third-quarter deliveries climbed 81 percent and 98 percent in China and Europe respectively from a year ago. About a third of the quarterly shipments were mid- to high-end models, Huawei said, up from 25 percent a year earlier.
Huawei cemented its position as the third-largest smartphone vendor, a rank that previously belonged to Chinese rival Xiaomi, after its third-quarter smartphone shipments rose 63% year-over-year to 27.4 million handsets, according to Reuters.
"It's hard to find a solid contender to Huawei for the top three position (after Samsung and Apple) in the short term," said Nicole Peng, Asia Pacific director at research firm Canalys. "That's impressive growth."
Huawei is projected to ship more than 100 million smartphones in 2015, around 33% more than 2014, outpacing growth forecast for major rivals including Apple, Xiaomi and Lenovo. The Shenzhen-based handset maker also doubled its smartphone revenue in the first half of 2015 in China, a key smartphone market alongside the United States.
Nevertheless, Huawei remains a distant third behind Apple and Samsung, largely because its market penetration remains low in the U.S., where its devices were once labeled a security risk in a U.S. Congressional report. Huawei's smartphone market share was worth $7 billion in the second quarter, according to Canalys.