Sales of smartphones in the third quarter fell by 6.8% as demand exceeds component supplies

Quarterly smartphone sales reportedly fell by 6.8% year-over-year as continued supply chain disruptions prevented manufacturers from meeting consumer demand.

According to Gartner’s latest study of the global smartphone market, limitations in components such as radio frequency and power management chips have caused production shortages across the globe. The impact, which affected all major smartphone manufacturers, resulted in sales of just over 342 million units, down from 366 million shipments in Q3 2020.

Samsung’s internal component and chip production allowed it to remain solid in first place, capturing 20.2% of the market, despite a 1.9% year-on-year decline in the share. It was also helped along the way by strong sales across its premium smartphone lines, with Gartner in particular noting impressive shipping figures for its latest foldable smartphone updates.

Apple regained second place, loosening Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi, rising from 3.1% to 14.1% of the market. The company’s success was driven by a combination of iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Pro launches, as well as heartfelt attempts to clear bottlenecks in the supply chain. Despite being knocked down in third place, Xiaomi grew by 0.9% to hold 13% of all sales, thanks to its growing alliances with European and Middle Eastern communications providers, according to Gartner.

Xiaomi’s other Chinese smartphone manufacturers Vivo and OPPO rounded out the top five, with Vivo showing the strongest growth of any company on the list, reaching 10.5% of the market for fourth place. It was also helped along the way by growing sales in Europe and the Middle East as well as expanded partnerships with offline distribution channels. This jump in shipments broke into 8.1% of the market it had with OPPO a year ago. OPPO in fifth place also grew, but more modestly, closing the quarter with 9.8% of all shipments.

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