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Apple leads the premium smartphone market in 2018: Counterpoint

Cupertino-based technology giant Apple has maintained its lead in the premium segment of the global smartphone market, even though the company lost 7% of the market share in 2018, according to research. The iPhone maker is followed by Samsung, which sits on the second position even though it lost 1% of its market share.

The research further added that the year saw Huawei and Oppo making significant gains. However, a new entrant in the worldwide premium smartphone market in 2018 is OnePlus, which is also has a slot in the top three of the premium segment in India.

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The Market Monitor report, which first surfaced in Counterpoint Research, says that Apple accounted for the 51% of the worldwide premium smartphone shipments. While it has fallen from 58% a year earlier, the company is still leading the segment with a significant margin over Samsung, which holds the second spot. The South Korean technology giant has 22% shipments and was followed by Huawei at 10%, Oppo with 6% and OnePlus with 2%.

The report also said that the overall premium smartphone market went up by 14% year-on-year and this was driven by the launch of the 2018 iPhones and some premium smartphones from Chinese brands. Among the Chinese players in the smartphone market, Oppo saw 863% growth, while OnePlus growth was 209% and Xiaomi’s was 149%. These three are said to be the fastest growing brands in the premium segment of the global smartphone market.

If we speak specifically of the Asia-Pacific region, it saw the fastest growth in premium smartphone shipments at 27%. The Indian smartphone market grew 14% and China saw a 37% rise in shipments. However, the difference is that in India, Samsung got the top spot. The South Korean technology giant was followed by OnePlus, Apple, Huawei and Vivo.

We should also mention that Chinese smartphone brand OnePlus has recorded its highest ever shipments in a single quarter in India for Q4 2018. A big reason why Apple could not perform as well in India as it did in the global smartphone market is that the cost of the latest iPhones in the country becomes exorbitant because of the import duty that is imposed.

It is also worth mentioning that search giant Google was among the top five premium smartphone vendors in Western Europe last year. It should also be added that although Oppo has grown tremendously this year, most of its growth came from the Chinese smartphone market.

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