Apple picks up ground on rivals in US smartphone race on strong Christmas quarter iPhone sales

By , Jan 16, 2014

Apple iPhone 5s 5c launch video (image 001)

Although we won’t get to see some cold, hard numbers in terms of the iPhone’s market performance until January 27, when Apple is scheduled to deliver its earnings results for the calendar 2013 holiday quarter, it already looks like the “disappointing” dual-iPhone launch has altered the landscape in the United States in Apple’s favor.

Research firm NPD on Thursday published its survey of U.S. smartphone ownership, showing the Apple handset growing its share of domestic customers to 42 percent, a notable jump from the 35 percent share in the year-ago quarter…

The study, which surveyed about 5,000 smartphone customers in the United States, found every other vendor – HTC, LG, Motorola, BlackBerry and Others – losing steam with the notable exception of Samsung of South Korea, which went from 22 percent in Q4 2012 to 26 percent in Q4 2013.

Together, Apple and Samsung accounted for more than two-thirds of the U.S. smartphone market in the Christmas quarter, or 68 percent. That means that out of every three U.S. smartphone owners, two carried an iPhone or a Galaxy smartphone in their pocket.

npd_us_smartphone_base_4q13

It should be noted that the United States isn’t really an accurate representative of the worldwide market, with Android leading on the global scale with as much as 80 percent of all smartphones sold due to its availability across a wide range of price points, sizes and carriers.

In regard to the iPhone, Apple CEO Tim Cook hinted in interviews announcing a landmark deal with China Mobile that his company saw a record high sales of all iPhone models in the Greater China during the holiday quarter.

By some estimates, Apple shipped about 1.4 million iPhone 5s units to China Mobile ahead of the launch. The handset officially goes on sale on the China Mobile network tomorrow, a “watershed day” for Apple.

Another data point: CIRP found (via Re/code) that Apple’s colorful mid-priced iPhone 5c actually helped boost sales of the flagship iPhone 5s, with the latter accounting for 59 percent of U.S. iPhone sales through December.

By comparison, the iPhone 5 during the same period of 2012 took 50 percent of sales and the iPhone 4s represented 32 percent.

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  • Lady GAGA

    Be the first to reply to this comment

    • Bob

      errrr no

  • Ted Forbes

    “That means that out of every three U.S. smartphone owners, two carried an iPhone or a Galaxy smartphone in their pocket.”

    According to the graph the measurement would be out of every 5 US smartphone owners 4 carried iPhone or Galaxy.

    That is, two and a half is iPhone and one and a half is Galaxy and one out of five are shared between the others.

  • Steve Zou

    Poor HTC, seems that the HTC One will be the last HTC phone I own.

    • Raashid

      Why’s that? ‘Cause it’s not popular you choose to dish it? Seriously, what’s with people like you that think the top selling has the most to offer? That’s not always the case…

      • Steve Zou

        No, of course not. Guess you don’t have the One at all. The One is great, much much better than Shamesung craps. But there are still some disappointment with the One. Maybe HTC will fix something this year, but there will always be more issue. Ultimately, it’s more about details. And Apple is the one who pays way more attention to details.

      • Raashid

        Hmm, guess there might be a few things I’m taking for granted on my freed 4s (iOS 6)…but in all honesty, I wouldn’t be holding a 4S if not jailbreak and pre-iOS 7. Without jailbreak, iOS just feels lile a complete joke compared to the competition.

        After iOS 7 forcibly taking away beauty (no option to bring it back), my next phone would be running Android…I’m considering the GS5. That way, I’ll find out what I’m taking for granted in official iOS (besides security).