Apple Overtakes Samsung As World's Top Smartphone Vendor in Q4 2016

Apple overtook Samsung to become the world's largest smartphone vendor in the fourth quarter of 2016 as shipments reached 439 million units.

According to independent research firm Strategy Analytics, global smartphone shipments grew 3 percent annually to hit a record 1.5 billion units in 2016. Apple shipped 78.3 million handsets in the fourth quarter of the year – around 800,000 more units than Samsung – allowing it to recapture its number one position with 18 percent global smartphone market share.

smartphone market Q4 2016

Apple shipped 78.3 million smartphones worldwide and captured 18 percent marketshare in Q4 2016, rising a steady 5 percent annually from 74.8 million units in Q4 2015. This was the iPhone's best performance for over a year, as Apple capitalized on Samsung's recent missteps. Samsung shipped 77.5 million smartphones worldwide in Q4 2016, dipping 5 percent annually from 81.3 million units in Q4 2015.

Bolstered by the popularity of the iPhone 7 and particularly the iPhone 7 Plus, Apple's 5 percent increase in shipments year-over-year helped it secure a 17.8 percent share of the global smartphone market, narrowly beating Samsung's share of 17.7 percent, which was negatively impacted by the company's Note7 battery fiasco. Samsung captured 21 percent share for the full year, marking its lowest level since 2011.

Despite the Q4 results, Samsung maintained first position in annualized figures, with 309 million units shipped worldwide in 2016, compared to Apple's 215 million units. Despite struggling in China against rivals like OPPO, Huawei's impressive overseas performance helped it maintain third position, with a record 10 percent global smartphone market share in Q4 2016 – the first time the company has reached double figures – while OPPO held on to fourth position and grew 99 percent annually to capture a record 7 percent global smartphone market share.

The research comes one day after Apple released its Q1 2017 financial results, in which it reported record results over what corresponds to the fourth calendar quarter of 2016. Cook was bullish on the iPhone's future, and talked up the smartphone's importance across a range of segments, including home automation, health, CarPlay, and enterprise. "I think the smartphone is still in the early innings of the game," Cook said during the earnings call. "App developers are still inventing and there are some exciting things in the pipeline that I feel really good about."

Related Forum: iPhone

Top Rated Comments

busyscott Avatar
74 months ago
Ironically, both had explosive performance in Q4.
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)
AllieNeko Avatar
74 months ago
Apple and Samsung have different release cycles. For Apple to NOT exceed Samsung in Q4 regularly, shows just how much bigger Samsung is.

The bigger question is - does it matter? Selling more **** will always get you more volume. Samsung's sales lead in units isn't due to flagship phones competing directly with the iPhone. It's due to the millions and millions of unbearably terrible rubbish phones they sell. At the flagship level, where Apple competes, they've always blown Samsung away.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
keysofanxiety Avatar
74 months ago
I don't think anybody a decade ago could have predicted the sales volume of the iPhone. The Nokia 3310 family sold 126 million units in its lifetime. Apple are nearly doubling that number annually. It's mindboggling.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jscooper22 Avatar
74 months ago
this sucks, now they're never gonna make new desktops.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
keysofanxiety Avatar
74 months ago
Total Click bait, I think macrumors is the troll in the room
It's not clickbait, it's exactly what it says. The title states Apple overtakes Samsung as top smartphone vendor in Q4 2016. The numbers show Apple sold 78.3 million in Q4 '16, whilst Samsung sold 77.5 million in Q4 '16. 78.3 is more than 77.5.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Adithya007 Avatar
74 months ago
It's more like Samsung's failure than Apple's own victory.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

USB C Over Lightning Feature

EU Passes Law to Switch iPhone to USB-C by End of 2024

Tuesday October 4, 2022 3:30 am PDT by
The European Parliament today voted overwhelmingly in favor of enforcing USB-C as a common charging port across a wide range of consumer electronic devices, including the iPhone and AirPods, by the end of 2024. The proposal, known as a directive, forces all consumer electronics manufacturers who sell their products in Europe to ensure that a wide range of devices feature a USB-C port. This...
General iOS 16 Feature Yellow

10 New iOS 16 Features Coming Later This Year

Monday October 3, 2022 2:41 pm PDT by
iOS 16 was released to the public three weeks ago with a customizable Lock Screen, the ability to edit iMessages, improvements to Focus modes, and much more. And in the coming months, iPhone and iPad users have even more new features to look forward to. We've rounded up 10 new features coming to the iPhone and iPad later this year, according to Apple. Many of the features are part of iOS...
ipad pro m1 feature

Gurman: Apple Event This October Remains Unlikely, No Touch ID for iPhone 15

Sunday October 2, 2022 6:41 am PDT by
Apple is developing new iPad Pro, Mac, and Apple TV models, and at least some of these products will be released in October, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. However, Gurman continues to believe that Apple is unlikely to hold an event this month. In the latest edition of his Power On newsletter, Gurman said "the big iPhone 14 unveiling last month was probably it for Apple in 2022 in...
iOS 16

Apple Preparing iOS 16.0.3 With More Bug Fixes Following iPhone 14 Launch

Monday October 3, 2022 7:53 am PDT by
iOS 16.0.2 was released last month with several bug fixes for iPhone 14 issues, excessive copy and paste permission prompts, and more. Now, evidence suggests that Apple is planning to release iOS 16.0.3 with additional bug fixes. Evidence of an upcoming iOS 16.0.3 software update has shown up in MacRumors analytics logs, which have been a reliable indicator in the past. There are several...
Apple SIM Card

Apple SIM No Longer Available for Activating New Cellular Data Plans on iPads

Sunday October 2, 2022 8:04 am PDT by
As of October 1, Apple SIM is no longer available for activating new cellular data plans on supported iPad models, according to an Apple support document. Introduced in 2014, the Apple SIM was designed to allow iPad users to activate cellular data plans from multiple carriers around the world. Initially, the Apple SIM was a physical nano-SIM card, but it was embedded inside later iPad Pro...
maxresdefault

Video: AirPods Pro 2 vs. Bose QuietComfort II

Monday October 3, 2022 12:50 pm PDT by
Apple on September 23 officially launched the second-generation version of the AirPods Pro, introducing updated Active Noise Cancellation, Adaptive Transparency, improved sound, and more. Right around the same time, Bose introduced new QuietComfort II earbuds with many similar features, so we thought we'd compare the two to see which has the edge. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for ...
General YouTube Feature 1

You May Soon Need to Be a YouTube Premium Subscriber to Watch 4K Videos

Monday October 3, 2022 4:29 am PDT by
YouTube may make watching videos in 4K quality on the platform exclusive to only YouTube Premium subscribers, according to screenshots posted by users on Twitter and Reddit. On Reddit (1,2) and Twitter, some users have started to recently notice that on iOS, and presumably across other platforms also, YouTube is now saying that in order to watch videos in 4K, the user must be a paying...
dynamic island alan dye

Apple Executives Talk About iPhone 14 Pro's Dynamic Island in New Interview

Sunday October 2, 2022 10:48 am PDT by
In a new interview, Apple's senior vice president of software engineering, Craig Federighi, and Apple's vice president of human interface design, Alan Dye, sat down to discuss the thinking behind the iPhone 14 Pro's Dynamic Island and how it was developed. During the interview with the Japanese magazine Axis, Federighi, who oversees the development of iOS, said Dynamic Island represents the...