According to the latest research from Strategy Analytics, global smartphone shipments were 340 million units in Q1 2021, up +24% YoY representing the highest growth since 2015. The smartphone market rebound was driven by the healthy demand of consumers with aging devices and a phenomenal 5G push from Chinese vendors.
Apple shipped 57 million units iPhones worldwide, with 44% growth Year-over-Year, capturing second place with a 17% volume market share. The strong momentum behind the 5G iPhone 12 series continued across multiple markets.
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The China smartphone market had a sensational quarter driven by 5G product success across multiple price tiers. China smartphone shipments were up +35% YoY reaching 94 million units in Q1 2021.
Globally, the top five vendors combined took a 76% market share in Q1 2021, up from 71% one year ago. Chip shortages and supply side constraints did not have a significant impact in Q1 among the top 5 brands but was and will be a concern for smaller vendors over the next few quarters in our view.
Samsung remains the largest vendor shipping 77 million smartphones globally in the first quarter, growing +32% YoY from 58 million units in Q1 2020. Samsung’s newly launched more affordable A series 4G and 5G phones, and the earlier launched Galaxy S21 series combined drove solid performance in the quarter. For more, read the full Strategy Analytics report.
We'll have to wait and see how IDC reports the same calendar Q1 2021 shipments in the coming weeks in order to confirm Apple's growth rate.