Briefing: Huawei closes in on Samsung for smartphone sales in EMEA region

1 min read

Huawei Takes Nearly a Quarter of EMEA Smartphone Market and Closes Gap to Samsung in Fourth-Quarter 2018, Says IDC  – International Data Corporation

What happened: Huawei significantly widened its share of the smartphone landscape during the fourth quarter of 2018 in the EMEA region, which comprises Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. Smartphone volume for the Chinese smartphone maker grew to more than a fifth of the market, according to US market intelligence firm International Data Corporation (IDC), narrowing the gap with market leader Samsung, which led at 28.0%, falling 3.8% year-on-year. Huawei surged 73.7% to 21.2% in the fourth quarter of 2018 compared with 12.2% during the same period in 2017. Apple’s share fell 14.8% year-on-year to 16.6% market share during the same period. Xiaomi smartphone shipments also grew by 70.5% year-on-year to 4.3% market share.

Why it’s important: The EMEA region is a key battleground for smartphone producers because it is projected to grow steadily over the next few years. While Europe might see a decrease in shipments, the Middle East and Africa are expected to see steady annual growth of 2.8%. “Eyes in the industry have been on Huawei, to see how much it would grow, but also on Apple, to see how much it might fall after the company’s recent profit warning,” said Marta Pinto, research manager at IDC EMEA. Huawei’s rapid growth is rare for the region, and indicates the effectiveness of strategic moves such as launching its lower-priced Honor brand and diversified distribution channels.