Digitimes Research have released their latest market share figures and these show that almost 332 million smartphones were shipped across the world in the third quarter of 2015, showing a 10.5% increase over the previous quarter and 7.7% over the third quarter 2014. Whilst these two growth figures are interesting, it's the year on year increase that is more relevant as the third quarter is traditionally busier than the second quarter: an 8% increase in smartphone sales across the world is significant headline growth. In terms of market share, Apple and Samsung have around 40% of the global smartphone sales, but this is split between 25.6% Samsung and 14.5% Apple. One in four smartphones sold in the third quarter wore a Samsung badge, which despite Samsung's difficulties, still represents a considerable number of devices. Once Samsung are able to realize their Samsung Pay objectives, this could create a massive market force, but the mobile payment technology is not yet implemented on the majority of Samsung devices.
The next largest market share is Huawei at 7.4%, followed by Lenovo with 4.8%, LG at 4.5% and Xiaomi at 3.8%. BBK and TCL show 3.55 and 3.3% respectively, with Oppo's market share at a creditable 3.2%. The remaining companies consist of ZTE, Sony, Microsoft Mobile, Meizu, Coolpad and ASUS – with the top fifteen sellers showing a little over 81% of the market share. Of these fifteen, nine are Chinese, two are North American, two Korean, one Japanese and one Taiwan. Looking forward, Digitimes are expecting fourth quarter sales to increase to just under 400 million units, bring the total for 2015 to 1.325 billion smartphones, a healthy 10.1% increase compared with 2014.
Picking through the data, Huawei are the clear leader of "the rest" after Apple and Samsung. This strong showing represents their 2015 charm offensive, which has seen them working hard to increase their exposure and market awareness outside of China. Earlier in the year, Huawei released a beautiful Android Wear smartwatch and this was later followed by the higher end Google Nexus 6P smartphone. Much lower down in the pecking order we find Sony, which despite producing some very desirable Android-based devices, their market share of 2.0% is disappointing. Not as disappointing as Microsoft Mobile's 1.7%, although here Microsoft have seemingly given up on Windows Phone (although watch this space with regard to a Windows Surface Phone).