Apple, Samsung now tied for the title of world's largest smartphone maker

Posted:
in iPhone edited February 2015
The 74.5 million iPhones sold over the last three months of 2014 didn't just help Apple report the highest quarterly profit of any publicly-traded company in history, they also propelled the Cupertino giant into a first-place tie with Samsung as the largest smartphone maker in the world.




Samsung and Apple each took 20 percent of the smartphone market in the fourth quarter, according to new data from market research firm Strategy Analytics. That represents a 2 percent year-over-year bump for Apple and 10 percent year-over-year decline for Samsung.

Those figures are borne out by data from Samsung's fourth quarter earnings statement, as noted by Re/code. Though the company chose not to reveal exact sales numbers, they did say that nearly 80 percent of the 95 million Samsung handsets sold were smartphones, meaning they moved between 71 million and 75 million devices.

The slump has taken a massive bite out of Samsung's profits. Its cash-printing mobile division dropped 64 percent year-over-year, contributing to a 32 percent decline for the company as a whole over the same period.

In comparison, Apple reported record quarterly revenues of $74.6 billion on the way to $18 billion in profit, the largest quarterly profit ever reported by a publicly-traded company.

The shift has bitten component suppliers as well, given Apple's propensity for vertical integration. Qualcomm was forced to revised downward its projections for 2015 as demand for high-end smartphone processors slows in proportion to Apple's growth.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 73



    Technically, Apple only *designs* smartphones, doesn't it? I'm not aware that Apple owns the plants, so that would mean Foxconn is the largest smartphone *maker*, wouldn't it?

  • Reply 2 of 73
    Welcome to the game changer. May the most honest company win.
  • Reply 3 of 73
    This really is quite amazing and it is wonderful to finally see the world responding by spending their hard-earned cash on a product that we Apple fans have long known to be of the highest quality. But I have a concern. Now that Apple is a big fish, with a large percentage of world smartphone usage, will this kickstart virus and malware producers to concentrate more of their efforts on Apple products? For the longest time it was never really worth their time, but now that such a huge chunk of the market is using these products, and are an undiscovered resource for lowlifes such as virus makers, should we be worried?
  • Reply 4 of 73
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 5,772member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by LighteningKid View Post

     



    Technically, Apple only *designs* smartphones, doesn't it? I'm not aware that Apple owns the plants, so that would mean Foxconn is the largest smartphone *maker*, wouldn't it?




    Foxconn makes Samsung's phones too Einstein.  So what's your point?

  • Reply 5 of 73
    Now that Apple is a big fish, with a large percentage of world smartphone usage, will this kickstart virus and malware producers to concentrate more of their efforts on Apple products? For the longest time it was never really worth their time, but now that such a huge chunk of the market is using these products, and are an undiscovered resource for lowlifes such as virus makers, should we be worried?

    1) Apple has always been a target with their astronomical mindshare and customers with deep pockets.

    2) This is about HW vendors, not OS marketshare. Samsung lost ground to Apple, but they also lost ground to many other vendors, most of which use Android. If you're going by the largest OS install base or most out of date code then Android is still, by far, the easiest target.
  • Reply 6 of 73
    solipsismy wrote: »
    1) Apple has always been a target with their astronomical mindshare and customers with deep pockets.

    2) This is about HW vendors, not OS marketshare. Samsung lost ground to Apple, but they also lost ground to many other vendors, most of which use Android. If you're going by the largest OS install base or most out of date code then Android is still, by far, the easiest target.

    Thank you to help put my mind at ease.
  • Reply 7 of 73
    This really is quite amazing and it is wonderful to finally see the world responding by spending their hard-earned cash on a product that we Apple fans have long known to be of the highest quality. But I have a concern. Now that Apple is a big fish, with a large percentage of world smartphone usage, will this kickstart virus and malware producers to concentrate more of their efforts on Apple products? For the longest time it was never really worth their time, but now that such a huge chunk of the market is using these products, and are an undiscovered resource for lowlifes such as virus makers, should we be worried?

    iOS is one of the most secure operating systems on the planet. Don't jailbreak it, and you can sleep safely.
  • Reply 8 of 73
    Apple is at a point where they dont have to worry about getting profits. The just have to continue making great products.
  • Reply 9 of 73
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by sflocal View Post

     



    Foxconn makes Samsung's phones too Einstein.  So what's your point?




    What you just said supports my point. The title of the piece is that Apple and Samsung are tied for largest smartphone maker, but neither makes the smartphones, Foxconn makes them for both companies, so Foxconn is the largest smartphone maker.

     

    I guess "maker" could be ambiguous here, but in the context it would seem to imply "builder" more strongly than "designer".

  • Reply 10 of 73
    calicali Posts: 3,494member
    This really is quite amazing and it is wonderful to finally see the world responding by spending their hard-earned cash on a product that we Apple fans have long known to be of the highest quality. But I have a concern. Now that Apple is a big fish, with a large percentage of world smartphone usage, will this kickstart virus and malware producers to concentrate more of their efforts on Apple products? For the longest time it was never really worth their time, but now that such a huge chunk of the market is using these products, and are an undiscovered resource for lowlifes such as virus makers, should we be worried?

    Although android is a rip off of iOS, security is a lot different.

    Apple is like a house surrounded by a wall with all the goods locked in a safe.
    While android is like a house with open doors and all the goods in the living room.

    The hacker could waste his time trying to get into iOS' wall and crack the safe or just hack android since he's welcomed with open doors.

    Remember iPhone has always had huge market share. Nothing to worry about here.
  • Reply 11 of 73
    calicali Posts: 3,494member
    sflocal wrote: »

    Foxconn makes Samsung's phones too Einstein.  So what's your point?

    His point is Apple is doomed!

    android marketshare!!

    Stupid Beats deal!!

    Tim Cook!!
  • Reply 12 of 73
    solipsismy wrote: »
    Now that Apple is a big fish, with a large percentage of world smartphone usage, will this kickstart virus and malware producers to concentrate more of their efforts on Apple products? For the longest time it was never really worth their time, but now that such a huge chunk of the market is using these products, and are an undiscovered resource for lowlifes such as virus makers, should we be worried?

    1) Apple has always been a target with their astronomical mindshare and customers with deep pockets.

    2) This is about HW vendors, not OS marketshare. Samsung lost ground to Apple, but they also lost ground to many other vendors, most of which use Android. If you're going by the largest OS install base or most out of date code then Android is still, by far, the easiest target.

    I totally agree. Why waste time and effort trying to break into iOS when Android is wide open for an easy exploit. After several decades on the market MS WIndows is still easier to break into then OSX, I expect Android to continue to be much the same 20 years from now (if they are even still around).

    One time a reporter asked a major criminal why he keeps breaking into banks. He answered, "Because that's where the money is." Yet there's more money in Fort Knox and no one has yet tried to break in... because it would be just too hard to pull it off. So, it's not primarily the money, it's the ease of getting in and out with the loot.
  • Reply 13 of 73
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by LighteningKid View Post

     



    What you just said supports my point. The title of the piece is that Apple and Samsung are tied for largest smartphone maker, but neither makes the smartphones, Foxconn makes them for both companies, so Foxconn is the largest smartphone maker.

     

    I guess "maker" could be ambiguous here, but in the context it would seem to imply "builder" more strongly than "designer".




    Maker = designer.  Not quite sure why this is a nit you needed to pick, it's fairly obvious what "maker" entails.

  • Reply 14 of 73
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by cali View Post





    His point is Apple is doomed!



    android marketshare!!



    Stupid Beats deal!!



    Tim Cook!!



    Totally not the point I was making - I guess I was just being overly critical of the word choice.

     

    Still kind of funny, though. Although you forgot, "Steve Jobs would never have..."

  • Reply 15 of 73
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by LighteningKid View Post

     



    Technically, Apple only *designs* smartphones, doesn't it? I'm not aware that Apple owns the plants, so that would mean Foxconn is the largest smartphone *maker*, wouldn't it?


    It is more accurate to put it this way. Foxconn is a mere contractor, where Apple outsource their manufacturing to Foxconn. Effectively, Apple is still the maker, as it is the one that makes the call how many unit to produce, and in what shape.

  • Reply 16 of 73
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by FlashFan207 View Post



    This really is quite amazing and it is wonderful to finally see the world responding by spending their hard-earned cash on a product that we Apple fans have long known to be of the highest quality. But I have a concern. Now that Apple is a big fish, with a large percentage of world smartphone usage, will this kickstart virus and malware producers to concentrate more of their efforts on Apple products? For the longest time it was never really worth their time, but now that such a huge chunk of the market is using these products, and are an undiscovered resource for lowlifes such as virus makers, should we be worried?

    I guess with the Apple's walled garden (installing appstore's only apps), you are "pretty" be safe. Unless you are jailbreakers. 

  • Reply 17 of 73
    In an earlier post, I teased that Strategy Analytics would find a way to spin Apple's blow out iPhone sales in favor of Android. To learn Strategy Analytics actually ranked Apple and Samsung as equals for the number one spot gave me an OMG moment! I still expect Strategy Analytics (and the very credible IDC) to discover missing white box Android smartphones that buoy Android's market share. Until that happens, I am going to enjoy this new ranking.

    Oh... Something more... Come on Samsung! You spent a lot of money bad mouthing the iPhones 6 and 6+ last summer and fall. Tell the world how many smartphones you sold last quarter.
  • Reply 18 of 73
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by cali View Post





    His point is Apple is doomed!



    android marketshare!!



    Stupid Beats deal!!



    Tim Cook!!

    I think Tim Cook is doing fine, if not better than Jobs as the CEO of Apple. It is like a great pragmatist vs. idealist. 

  • Reply 19 of 73
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,322member

    And how many of those Samsung units sold are actually flagship, premium, high end phones, and not dirt cheap pieces of shit? Apples to Oranges. Whats as impressive as Apple's numbers, is their ASP. People forget that most of Samsung's phone sales are dirt cheap "feature phones" with Android installed, and not their flagship devices. It's why their profits are taking a massive dive. Apple can probably double their numbers if they sold $150 iPhones off contract. But what would be the point?

  • Reply 20 of 73

    I love the APPLE vs SAMSUNG wars. They sue each other yet sleep in the same bed. 

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