Apple's 5G iPhone models were the most shipped 5G phones worldwide during Q3

Apple's 5G iPhone models were the most shipped 5G phones worldwide during Q3
Even though it arrived late to the 5G party, the iPhone has become the life of that party. According to Strategy Analytics (via AppleInsider), during the third quarter, Apple had a leading 25% share of the global 5G smartphone market leading all rivals in the number of 5G phones shipped. Xiaomi was second with Samsung third, Oppo and Vivo fourth and fifth respectively.

Apple's iPhone was the top 5G phone shipped worldwide during the third quarter

Strategy Analytics says that the iPhone is the best-selling 5G phone in the world. Turning to Android flavored 5G handsets, Xiaomi is at the top of the list with Samsung edging out Oppo for second place. Ville Petteri-Ukonaho, Associate Director at Strategy Analytics, noted that "Samsung edged ahead of Oppo to become the second leading Android 5G smartphone vendor globally in Q3 2021."

Petteri-Ukonaho added that "Samsung has returned to positive territory following three prior quarters of negative sequential shipment growth. Samsung is benefiting from healthy demand across multiple regions for its smartphones, powered by a broad portfolio of devices across multiple price tiers. The combination of leading technology such as foldable display smartphones and multiple 5G devices have made Samsung products, such as its premium Galaxy Z Flip 3, the S21 Ultra and its affordable A-series, the second-most popular brand of Android 5G smartphones globally in Q3 2021."

Former Huawei sub-brand Honor showed the fastest growth in global 5G shipments during the third quarter with a sequential quarter-over-quarter increase of 194%. The company has been helped by its divorce from Huawei; the latter sold Honor for more than $15 billion to a consortium in late 2020.

Now that it is no longer part of Huawei, Honor does not have to deal with the restrictions that were placed on Huawei by the U.S. Those restrictions no longer apply to Honor allowing it to access its U.S. supply chain and use the Google Mobile Services (GMS) version of Android. Honor also can now use 5G versions of Qualcomm's Snapdragon chips.

Honor took advantage of its independence from Huawei in Q3 to have the best quarter-over-quarter growth in 5G phone shipments

Huawei cannot use the Google ecosystem and has created its own with Huawei Mobile Services (HMS). The beleaguered firm's phones are running the home-grown HarmonyOS 2 instead of Android, and the Snapdragon chips that it is allowed to use support 4G only and are not allowed to have any cutting-edge 5G capabilities.

Yiwen Wu, Associate Director at Strategy Analytics, stated that "Honor was the fastest growing Android 5G smartphone brand QoQ in Q3 2021. Honor 5G smartphones are rapidly increasing in popularity in China. Honor was formerly a sub-brand of Huawei but was spun out as an independent company earlier in the year. The company’s 50 5G, 50 SE 5G and 50 Pro 5G were its leading 5G smartphones in Q3 2021."

Samsung's strength in 5G phone shipments in Q3 outside China and Oppo's growth inside China dampened Xiaomi's Q3 5G results

Samsung's strength in 5G global phone shipments on a sequential basis helped it have the third-best quarter-over-quarter improvement in deliveries helped by the release of the 5G  Galaxy Z Fold 3 and the release of the Galaxy Z Flip 3. Motorola was second in this category followed by Samsung, Oppo and realme.

While Xiaomi had a strong gain in global 5G phone shipments during the second quarter, such growth faded during the third quarter. Ken Hyers, Director at Strategy Analytics, explained what happened during the period that started in July and ran through the end of September. "Samsung’s resurgence blunted Xiaomi's ability to grow in Europe in Q3 2021," Hyers noted, "while OPPO surged in China. Facing a combined one-two punch from Samsung outside of China and OPPO in China, Xiaomi saw demand for its 5G smartphones slow considerably in Q3 2021."

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