Apple iPhone captures 50% of global smartphone revenue, says report

Apple iPhone captured 50% of the global smartphone revenue share in 2023, according to a new report from Counterpoint Research. The analytics firm said 2023 was the first year when Apple grabbed half of the total revenue, which was also its highest-ever for a full year.

This growth came despite a 2% decline in smartphone revenues and a 4% decline in global shipments. As per the report, worldwide smartphone revenues were just shy of $410 billion, and shipments dropped to 1.17 billion units in 2023.

In addition to the growth in revenue share, the iPhone-maker surpassed Samsung for the first time in terms of annual shipments. Apple managed to capture 20% of the global shipment share, beating Samsung by 1%.

Counterpoint said that Apple"s success contributed to the ongoing "premiumization trends," where OEMs were able to sell more premium smartphones (with wholesale prices of more than $600). Apple, foldables, and features like generative AI helped premium shipments grow by 8% when non-premium segments saw double-digit declines.

As per the report, the average selling price (ASP) for Apple iPhones was recorded at $890, a 2% year-over-year increase. For reference, the global ASP was recorded at $350, which was higher than Samsung, sitting at $288.

Apple remains the "undisputed leader" in the premium segment, although its market share took a dip from 75% in 2022 to 71% in 2023. Overall, the premium smartphone market saw a 3x growth from 6% in 2016 to 24% in 2023, Counterpoint mentioned in a separate report.

Apple saw double-digit growth in emerging markets such as India, Caribbean and Latin America (CALA), and Middle East and Africa (MEA), Counterpoint"s Research Director Jeff Fieldhack said while commenting on the iPhone-maker"s growth. However, Apple"s biggest volume contribution came from the US.

Fieldhack noted that Apple"s growth in various regions helped the company "offset any challenges Apple may have faced in China due to the resurgence of Huawei." As per the report, Apple"s ASP growth, coupled with factors such as the stickiness of its ecosystem and premiumization trend, helped it reach the $203 billion iPhone revenue mark in 2023.

"There has been a shift in consumer buying patterns in the smartphone market. Considering the importance a smartphone holds, consumers are willing to spend more to get a high-quality device that they can use for a longer period," said Senior Counterpoint Analyst Varun Mishra.

He added that flagship devices are becoming more affordable due to promotion seasons and financing options. Also, they have become a "status symbol" for many consumers, especially in emerging markets.

On the other hand, Samsung saw a decline in both shipments and revenue due to its broader portfolio. While it was against Apple in the premium segment, Samsung faced increasing competition in the mid-tier segment from Xiaomi, Vivo, and other Chinese OEMs in markets such as India.

The report shares the timeline with Apple"s latest earnings call, where Tim Cook revealed there are over 2.2 billion active Apple devices worldwide. Apple"s long-awaited headset Vision Pro is also on sale now, with over 600 optimized apps and games available at launch.

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