Apple takes the number one position from Samsung in the US in the month of September doubling its market share from the previous month. Apple captured 39% share of the smartphone market and 34% of the overall mobile phones market in September, a record high for the Cupertino smartphone vendor for this calendar month in US.Commenting on Apple’s impressive performance, Tom Kang, Research Director at Counterpoint Research comments, “In spite of supply constraints and just three weeks of sales, iPhone 5s raced to become the bestselling smartphone model in the US in September. Samsung Galaxy S4 was the second best-selling model followed by Apple’s new iPhone 5c which captured the third spot. Demand was robust after a lull in July-August months in anticipation of newer iPhones.”
Mr. Kang further adds, “The key reason for this sudden jump in sales can be attributed to the big wave of upgrades due in this launch month from Apple’s huge installed base of iPhone users in US. This depicts a healthy replacement cycle and user base growth trends for Apple despite the array of Android devices launching from tens of OEMs every month.”
Peter Richardson, Research Director at Counterpoint Research, notes, “Apple dominates the ultra-premium $500+ price-band capturing a 90% share of this segment and helping Apple double its overall market share in just a few weeks.” Mr. Richardson, further comments, “While Apple dominated the ultra-premium price band, Samsung showed great strength in the $400-$500 price band; more than half the sales in this segment came from Samsung, which allowed the Korean vendor to maintain a healthy 32% share in the US mobile phone market overall.”
Commenting on Samsung’s prospects Counterpoint Research Director, Neil Shah notes, “Samsung needs to create a beachhead in the $500+ segment in 4Q13. We believe the combination of its Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy Gear is a good offering to help Samsung in this battle. The Note 3 is showing good early traction — gathering a loyal following with its large display, unique offerings like S Pen and attractive smart watch accessory, the Galaxy Gear. Thus, Samsung can capitalize on Apple’s current lack of larger screen smartphones and advanced accessories at least for near-term.”
Mr. Shah continues, “Apple and Samsung, captured a combined two-thirds of the smartphone market making US a largely duopolistic market, thanks to the hero flagship models and growing brand equity for these two smartphone giants. Consumers are now just not looking beyond iPhone or Galaxy series at point of sale.”
Meanwhile, the third largest smartphone vendor in US, LG, saw its share fell below 10% mark in September after a decent momentum for its flagship LG G2 over the last three months. Surprisingly, Motorola was the only other brand that maintained its market share during the month with some traction for its new Moto X smartphone, pegging ahead of Nokia and HTC in terms of smartphone market share in September. However each of these three players command less than 5% share.
* Chart and table source: Monthly Market Pulse September 2013
Counterpoint Technology Market Research is a global research firm specializing in Technology products in the TMT industry. It services major technology firms and financial firms with a mix of monthly reports, customized projects and detailed analysis of the mobile and technology markets. Its key analysts are experts in the industry with an average tenure of 13 years in the high tech industry.