According to the figures, the numbers have dropped to a five-year low where it has been estimated that a total of 36.4 million smartphones were shipped in Q1 2019. This is versus Q1 2018 in which 44.4 million smartphones were shipped, representing a drop of about 18% which is quite a sharp drop.
The companies that appear to be most affected by the drop are Apple, LG and other smaller brands. What’s interesting is that despite the overall decline, companies such as Samsung, Lenovo, and TCL (who makes BlackBerry smartphones) are actually enjoying an increase in market share.
According to Canalys Research Analyst Vincent Thielke, “Samsung brought real differentiation to its Galaxy S10 devices. Its triple camera, ultra-wide-angle lens, hole-punch display and reverse wireless charging all raised consumer interest. While these technologies are not new, Samsung is among the first to bring them to the US in a mass-market smartphone, and the appeal of such new features will be important for other launches this year.”
Of course, this does not represent the entire world, but given how big of a market North America is, it is a bit troubling nonetheless. Perhaps the market is getting a bit bored of the current iteration of smartphones and that maybe it’s time for a change. Could Samsung and Huawei’s foldables help revitalize the market? We’ll have to wait and see.