Driven by strong 5G upgrades for the iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 series, Apple reached the 60 per cent sales share mark globally last year for the first time since 2017.

According to a new report, the delayed launch of Apple devices in 2020 also pushed demand to 2021.

Apple, with its strong brand power, is in the best position to gain Huawei’s premium smartphone users, says a new report by Counterpoint Research.


This is also indicated by Apple’s growth in China, where the brand reached its highest ever market share in Q4 2021. Apple was the top OEM (original equipment manufacturer) in the premium segment in every region in 2021, the report showed.In 2021, the growth in the premium smartphone segment outpaced the 7 percent (on- year) growth in the overall global smartphone sales. The premium segment alone contributed to 27 percent of the global smartphone sales, its highest ever share.

The premium market growth in 2021 was driven by a mix of factors, includ-ing replacement demand, OEM strategies and supply chain dynamics. Upgrades to the affordable-premium segment in emerging economies and replacement demand for 5G devices in advanced economies continued to drive growth, said Research Director Tarun Pathak. Samsung’s sales grew 6 percent (on-year) in the segment, but the company lost share. The S21 performed better than the pandemic hit S20. The Galaxy Z Fold and the Flip series, which were launched in H2 2021, also performed well.

Going forward, the premium segment, driven by the replacement demand across markets, is likely to keep growing and outpace the global smartphone market growth, said senior analyst Varun Mishra.