The worldwide shipment of smartphones has gone up by 25.2% in the third quarter of 2014. Due to the increasing adoption of smartphones in emerging markets and the large number of new devices being launched by manufacturers, the worldwide shipment has crossed 300 million units in Q2 for the second consecutive year.
According to the data provided by IDC, Q3 2014 saw 327.6 million devices shipped worldwide which is a 25.2% increase from 261.7 million devices shipped in Q3 of 2013. Compared to Q2 2014, this is an 8.7% increase in shipments over the quarter. The report also mentions that developed markets have seen single digit increase while emerging markets have seen huge smartphone adoption rate and has collectively increased by 30% over the year.
While Apple and Samsung are clearly the worldwide leader in smartphone shipments, the competition has been huge from players like Xiaomi, Lenovo and LG as well. These manufacturers have seen huge growth in shipments due to the different market strategies they adopted for device sales.
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There is huge room for competition in the high end as well as the low end smartphone markets. While Xiaomi competes in the high end segment with low price feature rich phones, Lenovo has done so in the low end segment and both have seen huge success in their respective categories worldwide. LG has maintained its presence in both these markets by launching a series of high end as well as low end smartphones.
Marketwise, Samsung is the leader but saw a decrease in its total number of shipments. Heavy competition in markets where Samsung has had its strong hold is the reason. Low end and mid range phones are what drove sales for Samsung.
Apple’s launch of the most anticipated iPhone 6 boosted their sales in Q3 of 2014, making it their largest Q3 sales ever with Apple boasting of 10million units being sold in the launch week itself. Apple also has seen a sustained demand for 5c and 5s iPhones.
Xiaomi is the market disruptor that has been hugely discussed and analyzed worldwide for its unique marketing strategies and heavy sales that it made. Xiaomi now stands 3rd in the top 5 manufacturers with a strong hold in China and adjacent markets. The firm has seen a triple digit increase in sales Y-O-Y. The launch of MI4 in August is a key factor that has increased Xiaomi’s sales.
Xiaomi is also expanding in to other territories. The brand now has something like a cult-following. Its unique business model based on flash sale through exclusive sales on ecommerce portals has attracted great attention and traction. Due to its online sale model, Xiaomi can sell low-cost feature-rich high end phones.
The online sales model also helps reduce the distribution costsfor Xiaomi. At low purchase prices, the firm monetizes through softwares and services. In Q2 2014, Xiaomi had overtaken Apple in China with the total number of device sales.
Lenovo and LG have tied at the fourth position as IDC declares a statistical tie in the worldwide mobile phone market when there is less than 0.1% difference in the market share (based on shipments) of two or more vendors. Lenovo’s demand has grown outside its home market with Q3 witnessing 20% rise in shipments as compared to 9% last year.
Shipments of low end phones increased in APAC and MIddle East regions. LG, for the first time in the manufacturer’s history, saw its shipments go beyond 15 million units. LG’s F and L series in the mid-end and low-end phones saw a growth in demand in emerging and developed markets. High end phone, the LG G3 was released for the higher segment market.
From what Xiaomi has shown the world through its marketing strategies and unique tie ups with ecommerce portals, it clear that the users have an eye for what disrupts the market. Motorola was the beginner to the strategy of online flash sale for its phones – Moto G and Moto E through Flipkart. Xiaomi, Microsoft, Samsung all had only followed suit.