Apple managed to close the Q1 gap to Samsung in the European smartphone market
Both Samsung and Apple had a tremendous first quarter of the year in the global smartphone market, but despite facing the fast-growing competition of budget-minded Chinese brands like Xiaomi, Oppo, and Realme, the two tech giants came out on top in Europe as well between January and March 2021.
Thanks primarily to an incredibly successful (and unusually early) launch of the 5G-enabled Galaxy S21 family, Samsung edged out its arch-rival once again, boosting its overall sales numbers on the old continent by 13 percent compared to Q1 2020 and gaining a couple of percentage points in market share in the process.
While that may sound like a big win over an always formidable competitor, said competitor also continued to reap the rewards of a successful product release of its own during the early stages of this year's first quarter, concluding the three-month period just four percentage points behind the share of the European market leader.
The iPhone 12 lineup helped Apple jump 31 percent year-on-year in terms of sales figures while also growing from a 22 to a 28 percent slice of the pie. Otherwise put, Samsung's lead from back in Q1 2020 has been essentially cut in half a year later in spite of the undeniable popularity of both the aforementioned high-end S21 roster and the mid-range Galaxy A series.
Xiaomi reportedly managed to eclipse both Apple and Samsung in March, becoming the number one and two smartphone vendor in Spain and Italy respectively and ending the quarter in third place as far as the whole continent is concerned.Interestingly,
The company's Mi 11 family was largely responsible for a 73 percent year-on-year sales growth and an increase from 11 to 18 percent market share, putting the brand well ahead of rivals Oppo, Huawei, OnePlus, Realme, and Honor.
That's right, Huawei is basically part of the "others" category now, continuing its free fall and nearing rock bottom with only 2 percent share in Europe, down from 9 percentage points back in Q1 2020 and 26 (!!!) in Q1 2019.
Both OnePlus and Realme are very close to overtaking a company that was bidding for the world heavyweight title just last year, with the former's phenomenal progress likely having a little something to do with low to mid-end Nord-branded models released in the second half of 2020 and in early 2021.