Samsung, not Apple is leading sales of smart devices: IDC

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By Arlene Chang /  12 Dec 2012 , 14:42

2012 is certainly not Apple’s year.After its shares fell more than 6 percentwhich essentially shaved off $35 billion of its market value on the Nasdaq last Wednesday and its smartphone market in China in the third quarter fell by two spotsto take sixth place (compared to its no 4 position in Q2) – there’s more bad news.

Rival Samsung is now far ahead for the number of units of smart connected device shipments and market share in Q3 2012 according to thisInternational Data Corporation(IDC)report. Even though Apple has increased its shipments and market share, the numbers don’t match up with Samsung’s.

Apple vs Samsung. AFP

According to the IDC research, smart connected devices include personal computers (notebooks and desktops), smartphones, and tablets.

In Q3 of 2011, Apple shipped 33.1 million units, making up 13.9 percent of the smart connected device market share worldwide. Samsung stood at 33.5 million units and constituted 14 percent of the market share then.

Apple has increased its market share percentage to 15.1 percent and the number of shipments to 45.8 million in Q3 of 2012. But, compared to Samsung’s97.5 percent jump in growth it’s clear that Apple has a lot of catching up to do. Samsung maintained top position in the market with 21 percent market share and 66.1 million shipments for Q3 this year.

“The battle between Samsung and Apple at the top of the smart connected device space is stronger than ever,” said Ryan Reith, program manager, Worldwide Mobile Device Trackers at IDC. “Both vendors compete at the top of the tablet and smartphone markets. However, the difference in their collective ASPs (average selling price) is a telling sign of different market approaches. The fact that Apple’s ASP is $310 higher than Samsung’s with just over 20 million fewer shipments in the quarter speaks volumes about the premium product line that Apple sells,” he said.

The smart connected devices market worldwide has seen overall growth and IDC expects it to retain momentum, estimating it will surpass 2.1 billion units in 2016.

IDC’s research also shows that although market dynamics are shifting in terms of product category, and that the age of multiple devices is upon us.

“Both consumers and business workers are finding the need for multiple ‘smart’ devices and we expect that trend to grow for several years, especially in more developed regions,” said Bob O’Donnell, program vice president, Clients and Displays.

According to IDC, in 2011, PC’s accounted for 39.1 percent of the smart connected device market. By 2016 this is expected to drop to 19.9 percent. The firm said that smartphones will be the preferred product category with its share growing from 53.1 percent in 2011 to 66.7 percent in 2016 and the share of tablets will also grow from 7.7 percent in 2011 to 13.4 percent in 2016.


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