Global 5G Smartphone Shipments Soar 458% in Q1

Article By : Strategy Analytics

Global 5G smartphone shipments soared by 458% year-on-year to a record 133.9 million in Q1 2021.

China’s rapid adoption of 5G technology is powering demand for 5G smartphones, according to new research from Strategy Analytics. Apple and the domestic trio of OPPO, Vivo and Xiaomi benefitted most as the demand exploded, with the three closing in on Apple as they capture 16%, 14%, and 12% global market share, respectively, in the quarter.

Ville-Petteri Ukonaho, Associate Director at Strategy Analytics, said, “Global 5G smartphone shipments soared by 458% year-on-year from 24 million units in the first quarter of 2020 to a record 133.9 million in Q1 2021. Huge demand in China, a strong push from Apple iPhone, and a wave of value priced Android models fueled a record quarter for 5G smartphone shipments.”

Strategy Analytics estimates Apple shipped a record 40.4 million 5G iPhones worldwide in Q1 2021, building on its strong performance of 52 million shipments globally in Q4 2020.

“Apple iPhone is the clear 5G leader with a 30% 5G smartphone market share globally in the quarter. Apple iPhone 12 5G is proving wildly popular across China, Europe and the United States, due to its sleek hardware design and surprisingly competitive pricing,” said Ken Hyers, Director at Strategy Analytics.

“We estimate OPPO captured 16% global 5G smartphone market share in Q1 2021, more than doubling its share from 7% in Q1 2020. OPPO has leapt ahead of domestic competitors Vivo and Xiaomi, taking advantage of Huawei’s collapse in 5G smartphones to capture share. OPPO’s A55 5G and Reno 5 5G have become hugely popular in China. We estimate that Vivo increased its global 5G smartphone share in Q1 2021, up 646% YoY on volumes of 19.4 million, taking 3rd place in global 5G smartphone shipments for the quarter,” said Yiwen Wu, Senior Analyst at Strategy Analytics.

Woody Oh, Director at Strategy Analytics, added, “We estimate that Samsung shipped 17.0 million 5G smartphones globally in Q1 2021, up from 8.3 million in Q1 2020. Samsung holds a 13% market share in 5G smartphone shipments globally in Q1 2021, down from 35% in Q1 2020. The surge in 5G volumes in China, allied with the Apple factor inevitably had a negative impact on share despite impressive product diversity from Samsung in 5G. Xiaomi rounded out the top-5 global 5G smartphone vendors on volumes of 16.6 million 5G smartphones shipped, up from 2.5 million in Q1 2020. Xiaomi captured a 12% share of the global 5G smartphone market in Q1 2021.”

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