Smartphones have become an almost indispensable part of our daily lives. Records have it that a whooping 1.5billion smartphones were sold in 2019 alone, yet not everyone in the world owns a smartphone.
Smartphones are now suited for every facet of our lives - banking, health, insurance, personal development, business, education and so on.
In the second quarter of 2019, 63% of smartphone shipments was controlled by the top five smartphone brands. Let's take a look at these brands.
Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd.
Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd is a South Korean multinational electronics company headquartered in Suwon, South Korea. It was established in January 1969. It is the world's largest manufacturer of consumer electronics and semiconductors. Samsung is a major manufacturer of electronic components like flash memory devices, processor chips and semiconductors for clients like Apple, HTC and Nokia.
It is also the world's largest manufacturer of mobile phones and smartphones. They started with the original Samsung Solstice and then later, the popular Samsung Galaxy line of devices.
The Samsung Solstice
Samsung has retained the largest market share in the global smartphone industry in the last eight years, taking this position away from Nokia.
Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd is a conglomerate consisting of three segments: Consumer Electronics (CE), Device Solutions (DS), and IT and Mobile Communications (IM).
Samsung's consumer electronics segment includes Televisions, Air conditioners, Monitors and Refrigerators. Samsung remains the world's largest manufacturers of television.
It's Device Solutions segment includes products like LCD and OLED panels, semiconductors, image sensors and Lithium-ion batteries used in electric and hybrid cars.
Its IT and Mobile Communications segment is the biggest segment in Samsung and its money spinner. This segment includes mobile phones, communication systems and computers. Of these, mobile phones remain the largest contributor to the segment's sales. Nearly 95% of sales made from this segment are from mobile phones and a whooping 40% of the company's total sales in the first half of 2019.
Samsung's S series and Note series smart devices, target premium customers, while the M series and A series are budget phones targeted for the mass market. Samsung's latest phone is the Galaxy Fold 2 which is expected to launch later this year.
With more than 20 percent of global smartphone sales, Samsung tops the list of smartphone companies and it is the second largest technology company in terms of profit and revenue.
Huawei is a Chinese technology company headquartered in Guangdong, China. It was founded in 1987 and has over 194,000 employees.
Huawei is the second largest smartphone company in terms of sales. It sold over 206million smartphones in 2018 alone. It's global market share stood at 15.8 percent in the second quarter of 2019.
Huawei has spread its products and services to more than 170 countries. In 2012, Huawei overtook Ericsson as the largest telecommunications-equipment manufacturer in the world. In 2018 they overtook Apple as the second largest smartphone manufacturers of smartphone in world, just behind Samsung Electronics.
Asides smartphones manufacturing, Huawei also has products and services such as Smart TV, tablet computers, multimedia technology, technology consultancy, switches, routers and wireless & fixed networks.
Huawei is currently banned from operations in the United States, one of its biggest markets. How the US ban impacts the company's performance remains to be seen.
Huawei's latest smartphone is the Y8s which was launched in May 2020.
Apple incorporated is an American multinational technology company with headquaters in California, USA. It is considered as one of the Big Five technolgy companies alongside Microsoft, Amazon, Facebook and Google.
It was founded in 1976 by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniack and Ronald Wayne.
In 2018, Apple made a net profit of $59Billion, making it the largest technology company in the world in terms of profit. It sold over 218 million iPhones in the same year. However, its sales declined in 2019 fiscal year and has crashed further in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Apart from its flagship product - the iPhone, Apple also has other products which includes the iPad tablet computer, the Mac personal computer, the Apple Smartwatch, the iPod portable media player, the Airpods wireless earbuds, the Apple TV digital media player.
Apple software products include macOS, iOS, iPadOS, watchOS and tvOS operating systems, iTunes, safari web browser and a catalogue of other software products and applications.
In the first month of 2019, iPhones made up 56 percent of Apple's total sales. It's software products and other applications made up 17% of the revenues. It's Mac computers and notebooks contributed only 10% to its revenue.
Apple's next flagship phone - Apple iPhone 12 is expected to launch later this year.
Xiaomi corporation is a Chinese electronics manufacturing and merchandise company founded in April 2010 and headquartered in Beijing, China. Xiaomi manufactures and invests in smartphones, mobile apps, laptops, bags, earphones and other products.
Unlike Huawei, Xiaomi is listed on the Hong Kong stock exchange. It sold about 60 million smartphones in the first quarter of 2019 making it the fourth largest manufacturer of smartphones.
Xiaomi released its first smartphone into the market in August 2011 and rapidly gained market share in China to become the country's largest phone manufacturer by 2104. By 2018, Xiaomi became the world's fourth largest smartphone manufacturer, leading market shares in China and India.
Xiaomi generated around $25Billion in revenue in 2018 and its profit for the year was around $2 Billion. Xiaomi smartphone constituted 65 percent of the company's total revenue and 32 percent of its net income in 2018. These figures only changed slightly for 2019.
Xiaomi has separated its Xiaomi and Redmi brands with the Xiaomi brand focusing on premium markets while the Redmi brand is focused on the mass markets.
Xiaomi's latest smartphones are the Mi 10 and Mi 10 Pro.
Oppo & Vivo
Oppo and Vivo are subsidiaries of one China's largest consumer electronics companies - BBK Electronics. BBK has its major markets in China, Russia and Belarus. Established in 1998, BBK Electronics sells and manufactures consumer electronics and smartphones.
In quarter one of 2017, BBK Electronics shipped 56.7Million smartphones, surpassing Huawei and Apple at the time to become the second largest phone manufacturer behind Samsung.
Oppo launched its first mobile phone in 2008 and VIvo was founded in 2009. Oppo sells in 40 countries and have over 40,000 employees. Vivo and Oppo each captured a 7.4 percent share of the global smartphone market in the first quarter of 2019.
OnePlus Technology is also owned by BBK Electronics.