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Apple overtakes Samsung as world’s top smartphone maker

by Brandon Russell | March 4, 2015March 4, 2015 10:00 pm PDT

The performance of Apple’s iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus during Q4 last year saw the company leapfrog Samsung as the top dog in mobile.

We’ve already seen plenty of data showing Samsung’s alarming decline, and this newest report shows just how grim the Korean company’s prospects have been over the past several months. But don’t feel too bad for Samsung, as the company still hung onto the No. 2 spot overall in 2014. It’s a worrying trend, however, especially with other competitors over in China growing at such an exponential rate.

Samsung in January revealed it shipped a whopping 95 million handsets over the quarter, though it didn’t say how many of those shipments translated to actual sales. It would appear the answer to that question is not very many, as Gartner’s data says the Korean company lost almost 10 percentage points in market share in the fourth quarter of 2014.

Gartner points out that Apple dominates the premium portion of the mobile market, while Chinese phone makers like Xiaomi are quickly becoming the go-to for price-conscious buyers. So what does Samsung do in response? It introduces two very beautiful, very high-end phones: the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge.

Whether these devices will help turn Samsung’s fortunes around remains to be seen. We love how the company’s new phones look and feel, though there’s been some major controversy around Samsung’s decision to ditch the removable battery and microSD slot.

The good news is that the mobile market overall is still growing, with smartphone sales totaling 1.2 billion in 2014. Yowza. As an aside, Gartner’s data also revealed that Android’s worldwide growth is now at over 80-percent, up from 78.5-percent last year, while BlackBerry has slipped to just under 1-percent. Ouch.

It’ll be a telling year for Samsung in 2015, especially with the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge. Can the company’s new devices stifle Apple’s momentum in the high-end market? There’s a lot to like about Samsung’s new phones, and we can’t wait to see how the year plays out.

Latimes

Brandon Russell

Brandon Russell enjoys writing about technology and entertainment. When he's not watching Back to the Future, you can find him on a hike or watching...

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