Samsung’s dominance slips further as phone market slumps by 6 percent

Samsung Galaxy A9 hands-on
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

The global smartphone market has suffered a drop of 6 percent in overall sale numbers, according to a report on the third quarter of 2018 from the International Data Corporation (IDC).

Similar to the drop in smartphone sales in the first quarter of the year, the IDC points at a slowdown in the Chinese market as being one of the primary factors for the global slump. Since China accounts for roughly a third of the overall global sales for smartphones, a reduction in Chinese buying tends to hit the market hard.

“China’s domestic market continues to be challenged as overall consumer spending around smartphones has been down,” said Ryan Reith, IDC’s Worldwide Mobile Device Trackers program vice president. “High penetration levels, mixed with some challenging economic times, has slowed the world’s largest smartphone market.”

Another significant reason for the slump is a drop in sales for Samsung. While the Korean company still sits pretty atop the pile with a 20.3 percent market share, sales have fallen 13.4 percent from 83.3 million in the third quarter of 2017 to 72.2 million this last quarter. According to the report, pressure in India and Indonesia from manufacturers like Vivo, Oppo, and Xiaomi are the most likely reasons for Samsung’s drop in sales. While the Galaxy Note 9 sold well, Samsung’s lack of strong midrange and budget range devices is starting to seriously hurt the company in certain markets. However, Samsung is looking to alter that by offering more feature-packed midrange options like the Galaxy A9.

Other manufacturers did better amid the slump. After passing Apple to become the second-largest phone manufacturer, Huawei’s reach has grown by another 32.9 percent — for a total of 52 million sales in this quarter. Apple’s sales grew too, though only by 0.5 percent to 46.9 million. The IDC expects that the recent release of a new iPhone range will mean stronger sales during the holiday period.

Xiaomi also continues to grow, adding 6 million sales to its numbers from the third quarter of 2017. If it keeps up its strong growth, we could see another Chinese company surpass Apple — but that seems unlikely for at least the next few years, even with further expansion into the U.K.

This is the fourth consecutive quarter the smartphone market has shrunk, and it shows no sign of stopping. It seems most consumers are happy to wait for longer before upgrading their phone — and that delay is hurting the market as a whole. However, it might not be forever, and the IDC predicts growth will return in 2019.


Rekindled yet again, Nokia’s next-gen phones offer more than just nostalgia

HMD Global, a startup that designs and builds Nokia Android smartphones, wants to put the Nokia brand name back “where it belongs.” It helps that it’s made up of ex-Nokia employees. We go behind the scenes to see how HMD formed.

Android vs. iOS: Which smartphone platform is the best?

If you’re trying to choose a new phone and you’re not sure about the merits and pitfalls of the leading smartphone operating systems, then come on in for a detailed breakdown as we pit Android vs. iOS in various categories.

The Note 8 and S8 range now have access to the Android Pie beta

Android 9.0 Pie has been released. But is your phone getting Android 9.0 Pie, and if so, when? We've done the hard work and asked every device manufacturer to see when their devices would be getting the update.

The Mi Mix 3 is coming to the U.K. on January 16 for a bargain price

Xiaomi announced the Mi Mix 3, a smartphone with a massive screen, a cool slide-up camera module, up to 10GB of RAM, and in the future, a 5G connection. Here's everything you need to know about it.

Verizon’s deal could get you a free iPhone XR — but there’s some fine print

Verizon launched a new deal for its smartphones aimed at encouraging customers to open a new line. If you're willing and you want two new phones, you could get a free Samsung Galaxy S9, iPhone XR, or Pixel 3.

From DIY to AAA, here's how to take a passport photo in 6 different ways

If you're applying for a passport or renewing one, you need to submit a photo in your official application. There are strict guidelines, but fortunately, it's something you can do at home. Here's how to take a passport photo.

OpenTable points can now be used to whittle down cost of a hotel stay

Have some OpenTable Dining Points built up? Now those points can also be used to make your own hotel discounts. OpenTable is teaming up with Kayak to use points as discounts on participating hotels.

Get $100 discount on the Razer Phone 2 for a limited time

The Razer Phone 2 is finally here, and it's got upgraded specs, that super-smooth 120Hz display, and an updated design. Here's absolutely everything you need to know about the Razer Phone 2.

REI slashes prices on Suunto, Garmin, and Fitbit Versa smartwatches

Though fitness trackers and smartwatches can get pretty pricey, REI is offering some sweet discounts on top brands. Right now, you can get a new smartwatch from Fitbit, Suunto, and Garmin for up to 35 percent off its normal price.
Social Media

Twitter suffers privacy scare as bug reveals tweets of protected accounts

If you set your Twitter account to private and you have an Android device, you'd better check your settings now. Twitter says it's just fixed a four-year-old bug that flipped the privacy switch to make the account public.

Check out the four cool Swatch watches you can use for mobile payments

Swatch has announced its Swatchpay technology is now available in Switzerland, enabling mobile payments from your Swatch watch. It works in a similar way to Apple Pay and Google Pay. Here's everything about it.

How to jailbreak your iPhone on iOS 12: A beginner’s guide

The latest jailbreaking tools for iOS 12 make freeing your iOS device easier than ever. This guide will teach you how to jailbreak your iPhone or iPad, and explain what jailbreaking will do for you.
Social Media

Spice up your Instagram videos by adding your top tunes to the soundtrack

Have you ever taken a beautiful video, only to have it ruined by some jerk in the background yelling curse words? Here's a list of apps you can use to add your own music to Instagram posts as well as your Story.
Home Theater

Dolby’s secret recording studio app may soon exit stealth mode

In secret testing since June, Dolby's stealth recording and social network app may soon be ready to make an appearance. Dolby 234 blends unique noise-canceling tech with Instagram-like audio filters.