The sale of the iPhone 12 has relaunched Apple to the top of the food chain after four years. According to research firm Gartner, the US tech giant sold 80 million mobile devices in the last quarter, re-establishing the company as the largest smartphone vendor in the world.
Although the industry as a whole has declined last year, Apple has taken the first place from South Korean competitor Samsung with the first 5G variant of the iPhone.
The annual worldwide sales of smartphones fell by 12.5 percent in 2020, by “only” by 5.4 percent in the fourth quarter. of the five largest smartphone makers, only Apple and the Chinese Xiaomi posted revenue growth last year.
Downfall of Huawei
Huawei, which was the largest smartphone vendor in the world last summer, saw its mobile phone sales plummet by 41 percent. The Chinese company’s supply chain was severely disrupted by US trade attacks. Domestic competitor Xiaomi benefited from the downturn and saw sales increase. The general decline in sales in the sector is due to declining consumer confidence due to Covid-19, according to the research firm.
According to the report, the 5G function of the iPhone 12 has caused Apple users to upgrade their phones en masse. As a result, Apple sales increased 15 percent from the previous quarter. Over the year as a whole, Samsung still retains the first place, but the iPhone maker is marked first in the fourth quarter.
The tumultuous year 2020 thus caused a dance of chairs in the ranking of the most important smartphone brands. In the fourth quarter of 2019, Samsung led the way, followed by Apple, Huawei, Xiaomi and OPPO. At the end of 2020, Huawei fell to 5th place and Apple moved to 1st place, followed by Samsung, Xiaomi and OPPO.
“The momentum of Apple’s 5G iPhone sales should continue into 2021, while the entire market should gradually recover,” said an analyst at Gartner.