Motorola, Blu, and Apple are winning in the booming US unlocked smartphone market

Motorola, Blu, and Apple are winning in the booming US unlocked smartphone market
According to a new report from market research firm Strategy Analytics, 2015 was a very good year for unlocked smartphone sales in the US. SA estimates that 14.6 million unlocked smartphones were shipped last year, up 140% from 6.1 million units in 2014.

Data for 2015 shows that unlocked smartphones took a 9% share of total smartphone shipments in the US, compared to just 4% back in 2014. Overall, 158.7 million smartphones are estimated to have been shipped in the US last year, a 7% year-on-year improvement.

On a manufacturer level, it looks like 2015 was a very good year for Motorola. The Lenovo-owned manufacturer shipped 1.4 million unlocked smartphones in the US, up from just 0.1 million unlocked units in the precedent year. 

In the past year, Motorola captured 9% of the unlocked smartphone market as handsets such as the Moto X Pure, the 3rd-gen Moto G, and the 2nd-gen Moto G managed to strike a cord with US smartphone customers.

Florida-based manufacturer Blu has solidified is position at the top of the raw sales charts. This new report claims that the manufacturer shipped 5.2 million unlocked smartphones last year, a 160% annual growth.

Apple is estimated to have shipped 1.8 million unlocked iPhones in the US in 2015, up from 0.7 million units the year before. According to Strategy Analytics, Apple's growth in the unlocked smartphone segment was largely driven by the iPhone Upgrade Program that the company launched in Q3.

Looking into the future, the research firm believes that smartphone shipments will grow to 23 million units shipped in 2016, for a 14% slice of the total US smartphone market. Linda Sui, Director at Strategy Analytics, comments:


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