Apple’s iPhone Dominates Holiday Smartphone Sales

Apple ruled the holiday season with its iOS devices remaining the preferred gift choice, according to a new report from analytics firm Flurry. The data shows that holiday shoppers leaned towards iOS-based devices, with Apple activating two devices for every Samsung device that was activated.


Apple’s iPhones accounted for 44 percent of new phone activations while Samsung’s phone accounted for 21 percent only. The research firm found that iPhone continued to be consumers’ choice of gift though the Korean firm is gaining popularity by adding one percent compared to the last year.

The Flurry report reads:

This year, 44% of new phone and tablet activations were Apple devices with Samsung seeing 21%. While Samsung is slowly growing in popularity throughout the holiday season, up 1% from last year, Apple devices continue to be the gift to give. Holding the third and fourth positions for activations are Huawei and LG; which is remarkable, as both manufacturers do not have an individual device within the top 35 devices activated. Their high rank is likely due to the fact that they have wide variety of devices and affordable options (hundreds of phablet and medium phones) for consumers to choose from. Perhaps not so surprisingly, missing from this chart is the Google Pixel. With only two devices, the Pixel and Pixel XL, and mixed market reception, Google struggled to drum up excitement this holiday season.

The results are good news for Apple, which must post successful iPhone 7 numbers to prove that the flagship device drove a strong holiday quarter. However, the new data does not include sales outside the United States, and so it only tells a partial and inadequate story.

The popularity of smartphones and tablets by size from 5-inch to 6.9-inch is on the rise. The phablet category, including the 5.5-inch iPhone 6 Plus, 7 Plus, and 6s Plus, made up 37% of total device activations. Medium-sized phones, such as the iPhone 6s, iPhone 7 and 4.7-inch iPhone 6, made up 45% of the activations. A decline was seen in activations of full-sized tablets such as the iPad, notes MacRumors.

Apple will most likely offer more details on holiday sales during its quarterly earnings call expected next month.