Huawei trumps Samsung to become world’s top smartphone brand on back of strong China sales

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Updated: Jul 31, 2020 6:55 PM

For the first time in nine years, a brand other than Samsung or Apple has taken the lead in global smartphone sales.

Huawei’s international shipment suffered under US sanctions and the rising anti-China sentiments across the world as the global exports plummeted by 27 per cent in the April to June quarter.

Huawei has trumped Samsung to become the world’s biggest smartphone seller in the second quarter of 2020 for the first time predominantly based on higher sales numbers from China. According to data released by Canalys, the Chinese technology giant sold 55.8 million devices in Q2, 2020 followed by Samsung which sold 53.7 million mobile devices. However, it is more the plunge in Samsung sales number by 30 per cent that helped Huawei earn the top spot as the seller of the most mobile devices. Huawei’s own sales number slumped 5% year on year according to Canalys data.

The role of the Chinese market is overwhelming in boosting Huawei’s sales number as over 70 per cent of the 55.8 million devices sold by the company were sold in mainland China. Huawei’s international shipment suffered under US sanctions and the rising anti-China sentiments across the world as the global exports plummeted by 27 per cent in the April to June quarter.

According to another research firm Counterpoint Research, Huawei’s shipment to the European market that has played a key role in building the stature of Huawei as a global tech giant has fallen to 16 per cent in the second quarter compared to 22 per cent seen in the corresponding period last year.

Even before the coronavirus pandemic had hit the world economy and health, the United States had upped the ante against Huawei for alleged relations with the Chinese Communist Party. Following the coronavirus outbreak and the havoc it created, especially in Europe, resentment developed in European countries against Huawei and other Chinese companies.

As a result, following a security review, the United Kingdom government has decided to stop taking services of Huawei for building the 5G network in the country. Europe has been an instrumental market for Huawei’s business as it follows Apple and Samsung as the third leading smartphone maker ruling the market and the series of blockades will force Huawei to focus on consolidating its position in the Chinese market.

The fact that Google has banned its core android services from Huawei’s devices may have also hurt Huawei’s business in overseas markets as Android users across the world are large in number. Google’s services in China are more or less banned and hence the absence of core Android apps and services does not matter for users in China and this may well have boosted Huawei’s sales figure in mainland China.

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