Samsung finally has something to brag about in its battle with Apple. Data from Kantar Worldpanel indicates the flagship Galaxy S7 smartphone outsold the iPhone 6S/6S Plus in a three-month period ending on May 2016. The S7 grabbed a 16 percent share of the market, compared with the iPhone 6S line’s 14.6 percent.
While this might not seem like much, traditionally the iPhone has outsold its Galaxy S competitor in the States. Apple iPhone sales are starting to falter, however: The first quarter of 2016 marked the first year-over-year decline in sales for the popular device. Samsung does have a bit of an advantage here, though: Its S7 model launched in March, a full six months after the 6S line debuted.
Still, it shows that Apple has some work to do ahead of the expected launch of the iPhone 7 in just two months. The Galaxy S7 fared well in our own review, and was well received by consumers. Can Apple successfully market what appears to be a mostly incremental update as something consumers will want to buy? That’s the big question.
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Samsung maintains a wider lead when its other models are factored in. In the same three-month period ending in May, the company had a 37 percent share of the market compared with Apple’s 29 percent. Much of this is due to the expansiveness of Samsung’s line. The company offers more than a dozen phone models at any time; Apple sells just nine iPhones.
Yet Apple still has an advantage over Samsung in switchers. Some 14 percent of those purchasing a new iPhone in the period had previously owned a Samsung phone, while only 5 percent of Samsung customers previously owned an iPhone.
Both companies share an overwhelming number of buyers who plan to stay brand-loyal: Some 88 percent of all iPhone users plan to purchase another iPhone next, and 86 of Samsung owners are similarly loyal. The two companies’ phones also make up the entire top ten list of the most popular phones sold.
“Apple and Samsung have less to worry about from each other going forward — and much more to worry about from other competitors, and the changing landscape,” Kantar analyst Lauren Guenveur said.