a new report published by the NPD Group. But you probably didn't expect to see Alcatel ranked fifth, ahead of much higher-profile brands like Google and OnePlus.The names of the US silver and bronze medalists were fairly easy to predict based on recent history too, while Motorola unsurprisingly follows Samsung and LG in fourth place in
For what it's worth, the combined market share of these top five companies apparently dropped from 91 percent during the final three months of 2018 to "only" 89 percent in Q4 2019, which means the likes of Google and OnePlus actually made some (modest) gains, inching closer to surpassing Alcatel... and ZTE.
That's right, there's also ZTE, a company brought to the brink of extinction by the Trump administration just a couple of years ago, stopping its incredible ascent in its tracks before being able to threaten LG's spot on the US podium. While ZTE has obviously struggled to rebuild its retail presence and repair its tarnished reputation, some of its recent efforts certainly look good enough to mount a decent challenge to Alcatel's surprising position.
Unfortunately, the NPD Group doesn't attach any actual market share numbers to the names of the largest smartphone vendors stateside, so we have no idea how close Alcatel is to surpassing Motorola, for instance.
But it's still pretty crazy to think the TCL-licensed brand has managed to trump Google's ad spending and all the buzz surrounding the extremely well-reviewed OnePlus handsets with modest devices like the Avalon V Verizon subscribers can get for free right now or dirt-cheap models like AT&T's Tetra, Cricket's Insight, and the Alcatel 7 and 1X Evolve available exclusively on Metro by T-Mobile.