Apple Tops Global Smartphone Market in Q4 2020 Amid High iPhone 12 Demand

Thanks to surging iPhone 12 demand, Apple shipped its most iPhones ever in a single quarter at 81.8 million units, which is up 4% from previous year, allowing the company to take the top spot on the global smartphone market, according to analyst firm Canalys.


“The iPhone 12 is a hit,” said Canalys Analyst Vincent Thielke. “Apple is better positioned than its competitors on 5G, being heavily skewed towards developed markets, and mobile operator sales channels.”

The analyst highlighted that the omission of the power adapter from the iPhone retail box is making logistics significantly more efficient, amid the ongoing high cost of air freight due to the pandemic.

Samsung took second place, shipping 62.0 million units for a -12% decline, with Xiaomi, Oppo, and Vivo completing the top five. Huawei came in sixth place in Q4 2020 with 32.0 million smartphones shipped, marking the first time in six years that it fell outside the global top five smartphone vendors.

The total number of worldwide smartphone shipments reached 359.6 million units in Q4 2020, a small decline of 2% year-on-year.