iPhone Sales Soften, Fall Over 7% in Q2

The smartphone market grew 4.3 percent last quarter, but the gains eluded Apple.

Worldwide, smartphone sales totaled 344 million in the second quarter (Q2) of 2016, a 4.3 percent year-over-year increase, according to a new report released today from technology research firm Gartner.

Chinese vendors Huawei, Oppo, Xiaomi and BBK Communication Equipment, and Samsung from South Korea were the biggest gainers. Meanwhile, the company credited with kicking the smartphone market into high gear – Apple – continues to lose ground.

Sales of Apple's iPhone fell to 44 million units in Q2 on a 7.7 percent year-on-year decline. The Cupertino, Calif.-based device maker took a big hit in China and mature Asia/Pacific (APAC) regions, where sales dropped a dizzying 26 percent. In total, Apple walked away with nearly 13 percent of the smartphone market last quarter.

smartphone market

Samsung continues to reign in the smartphone rankings on the strength of its Galaxy line of Android smartphones. The company sold 76.7 million smartphones in Q2, earning it the top spot with more than 22 percent of the market.

Huawei, Oppo and Xiaomi round out the top five. Oppo is quickly gaining on the competition, noted Gartner. On a year-over-year basis, its sales surged 129 percent, from 8 million to nearly 18.5 million units sold. "Features such as an anti-shake camera optimized for selfies, and rapid charge technology, helped Oppo carve a niche market for itself and boost sales in a highly competitive and commoditized smartphone market," noted Gartner research director Anshul Gupta in a statement.

Android is far and away the world's top smartphone operating, capturing an 86.2 percent share of the market in Q2. In total, Android was running on nearly 270 million smartphones sold last quarter.

"Google is evolving the Android platform fast, which allows Android players to remain at the cutting edge of smartphone technology," observed Roberta Cozza, a research director at Gartner, in a statement. "Facing a highly commoditized smartphone market, Google's focus is to further expand and diversify the Android platform with additional functionalities, like virtual reality, enabling more-intelligent experiences and reach into wearables, connected home devices, in-car entertainment and TV."

Apple's iOS is a distant second with 12.9 percent of the market and sales of over 44 million iPhones. Windows and Blackberry are barely a blip on the radar, with less than a percentage point's worth of market share between them (0.6 percent and 0.1 percent, respectively).

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Datamation. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.

Tags: Android, iPhone, Apple, smartphone

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