There is no doubt that Samsung is Android’s darling boy right now. They are the largest Android manufacturer on the planet. No contest. But while

Samsung’s Android market share in decline

Posted by

There is no doubt that Samsung is Android’s darling boy right now. They are the largest Android manufacturer on the planet. No contest. But while a lot of noise is being made about Samsung’s Android influence, I believe that the Korean giant’s marketshare has been in decline for a while now. Stay with me.

Move over, US; China is here

China has passed the United States as the country selling the most iOS and Android OS smartphones. This was back in February this year. That means that China is now the world’s largest and most important smartphone market. If you want to see where the global smartphone market is headed, look at China. And for effects, after China, look at emerging markets.

Chinese Android

There is a growing army of Android manufacturers rising out of China. Samsung currently has 19% of the smartphone market in China. Lenovo has risen fast to become number two in China’s smartphone market after Samsung. Lenovo now holds 11% market share there. Apple is at 9.5%. There is also Huawei who is the third-largest global smartphone maker by sales – and Android is their primary OS. Nobody is talking about TECNO on the global scene – perhaps because this manufacturer has an African focus only. Big mistake. I have it on good authority that TECNO outsold other vendors in Nigeria last year 2012. People have no idea the sort of revolution that is going on within the Android ecosystem. Besides these known brands, there are many others who are rising up, especially in emerging markets, and are making a dent.

Don’t tell me that all these rising armies of Android smartphone manufacturers are not eating into Samsung’s lunch.

This infographic from shows the path of Samsung’s share of the Android smartphone market:

Samsung Android market share
According to UnWired, “It took a few years, but in 2012 most of the smartphone OEMs finally figured out how to make good Android phones. And they are getting better at it.” It looks so to me too. Sony is getting it right. HTC is still a bit of a hit-and-miss. LG is pushing too. And then, the China army. TECNO is getting it right – just play with the Phantom A for a few minutes to see for yourself.

Is this an attempt to say that Samsung is dying or failing? That would be a hilarious thought; wouldn’t it? Samsung is alive and well, and kicking butts. But the reality is that there is a revolution going on, and it is not happening where most people are looking. If Google ever was worried about Samsung becoming too powerful, they can relax now. While I believe that Samsung will remain the dominant Android manufacturer for a while, I daresay that their hold on Android has peaked. From here, the share of the cake and power begins to be diluted and spread out.

Statistics from IDC.


  1. I think the new development is good for the Android ecosystem and Google ad well. I think other manufacturers didn’t understand what was going on nor were they prepared when Samsung took off with their initial effort which appeared as though they were mimicking Apple. Out paid off and stood them in good stead to boss the Android ecosystem with numbers and the ensuing battle between them and Apple meant they must not relent their effort and to show that they actually have something going for them beside copying Apple.

    It was a good strategy, but other Android manufacturers are tired of playing stooge to Samsung and have now woken up to the challenge and are now taking the fight to Samsung to the ultimate benefit of consumers and the Android ecosystem as a whole.

  2. two facts explain the southward destination that Samsung Leadership in smartphone sales is headed:

    1. One out of every four humans is Chinese (that market is HUGE)

    2. Most of the smartphones used on planet earth are manufactured in China , but get branded by the Samsungs, HTC, etc..

    Although Tecno is making inroads here, THC is actually a bigger powerhouse in China.

    if THL should decide to fully head here, Tecno will be like the proverbial rat in the presence of a Cat. And it looks like they are just about doing that (

    The consumers are sure in for a treat, and the top players better watch out, and shape up, price wise.

    Some interesting links…:

    Chinese smartphones outperform established phone brands

    Buying phones from China: Why bother? Part 1

    Buying phones from China: Why bother? Part 2

  3. I think most of the shaking is probably happening around for middle range side of phones were affordable phones with decent performance lie. Top end range phone sales r dwindling just like the s4 not meeting analysts sales projections n d bb10 not kicking as expected. Why buy big exorbitantly priced phones when an affordable mid range would do fine. A 50 inch flat screen Samsung plasma or is it lcd TV was installed at my office today and I thought “the s4 probably costs more than this guy…crazy”. Lumia 520, 720, Huawei, Lenovo (perhaps not popular locally) mid range phones, n significantly tecno juggernaut locally are fast creating alternatives and even Samsung are probably not the kingpins I they used to be on terms of consumer choice in this class anymore. Net result, dwindling Samsung sales at the top end and other manufacturers eating into Samsung market share in the mid range or so I feel.

  4. Once again I have to say it – first world devices in a third world economy. I can bet that for the many with their iPhones, BBs and Samsungs there are as many with the less expensive Gionees, THLs and Tecnos even playing second fiddle to those brands.

    The emerging market and developing countries only became significant to the likes of Nokia and Blackberry when they lost market share in the more developed countries. Samsung, iPhone and Blackberry will still sell in North America and Europe. But it’s the smaller players that will also benefit alongside major brands.

    Why save for a used Samsung Galaxy something when you can buy a new Tecno Phantom for significantly less?

  5. I love this!

    ” Why save for a used Samsung
    Galaxy something when you
    can buy a new Tecno Phantom
    for significantly less?”

  6. Olusheenor, I remember suggesting the Tecno N7 to you, and you thought it was heresy, then..that you won’t be caught dead with it because it is UNcool?

    It surprises me to see you endorsing N-o-n-i’s statement up there..

    Llook like you have caught the “Tecnoid Mass Hysteria”…liol

  7. No sir! Hear me, this is just the signs to come: Tecno, Gionee and THL WILL kill Samsung. even if only in the African continent. When NOKIA started dying, people said impossible. Just go ask the dealers and distributors across Nigeria, they will tell you better.
    Already Tecno has dared the bog boys with N7 and the Phantom A, I tell you there is rumbling going on. Gionee is sneaking on, THL is digging her foundation! Ah the end for samsung is now, the evidence will be felt down the road.
    Let me draw your attention to how brands begin to die: it starts by the predator brand like Tecno making it possible to use the prey like NOKIA accessories eg, batteries and chargers etc. Did you know that the Galaxy charger work better and charges the phantom A better than the phantom A stock charger? Thats how brands begin to die. It has happened before, its going to happen again unless Samsung evolve a better Mobile Operating System
    or crash their very un resonable prices. The end is here, call me a doomsday prophet, the mobile gods have spoken!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *