The year is barely half over, but already it looks like Samsung will emerge as the top dog among Android-powered smartphones. Samsung's Galaxy S7 Edge was the most popular Android phone during the first half of 2016, according to figures released this week by Strategy Analytics.
Samsung shipped an estimated 13.3 million units of the S7 Edge (pictured above, right) and accounted for a 2.3 percent market share of all Android phones shipped globally over the first six months of 2016.
The less expensive Galaxy J2 came in second in Strategy Analytics’ research with estimated shipments of 13 million units and a 2.3 percent share of all Android phones shipped, presumably owing to its popularity in emerging markets.
In third place was the flagship Galaxy S7 (pictured above, left), which garnered estimated shipments of 11.8 million and a 2 percent share of all Android phones shipped over the first half of the year. In fourth and fifth place were Samsung's J5 and J3 phones, respectively, meaning Samsung had a clean sweep of the top five Android smartphones in terms of worldwide sales.
"The two flagships from Samsung are probably best seen as two flavors of the same phone, and so it's impressive that both of them were in the top three," Jan Dawson, chief analyst at Jackdaw Research, told us today. "The S7 Edge is both bigger and more distinctive, both of which likely appealed to at least some users and helped it win out."
While Samsung dominated the Android category, shipments of Apple's iPhones fell 16 percent annually from 108.7 million in the first half of 2015 to 91.6 million in the first half of 2016, according to Strategy Analytics. Despite that, the iPhone 6s and the iPhone 6 joined the Galaxy S7 Edge among the three most popular smartphones in that period.
Challenge from China
Samsung’s smartphone line had been struggling until the introduction of the S7, whose distinctive design includes curved edges that allow more room for apps and other content. Strategy Analytics also pointed to the ease of use of the S7 Edge. Reportedly, Samsung’s upcoming Galaxy Note 7 will have a dual-sided feature. The S7 lineup has played a part in greatly improved revenue figures for Samsung over the past two quarters.
Samsung remains a target of Chinese manufacturers that are seeing a spike in demand for their phones, which are often cheaper than those made elsewhere. Shipments by China-based Oppo rose 137 percent in the second quarter of 2016, compared with the same period a year earlier, according to the Strategy Analytics report. Oppo’s market share also rose to 5.3 percent from 2.2 percent.
"The reality is that cheaper phones dominate the Android market, but that market is so crowded that it's tougher for individual phones to sell in such large volumes," said Dawson. "At the flagship end, there's more focus, and so you have Samsung's two flagships standing out as winners."
Image credit: Product shots by Samsung.
Jack the reaper:
Posted: 2016-08-03 @ 1:23pm PT
S7 edge is the best smartphone you can get right now. I mean look at it. It's so beautiful and fast. Get the Exnyos one.