The share of the Japanese smartphone market held by Samsung Electronics improved by a significant margin over the second quarter of the year, data gathered by Strategy Analytics showed on Monday. The Seoul-based original equipment manufacturer (OEM) managed to sell approximately 700,000 handsets in the Far Eastern country over the three-month period ending June 30, thus ensuring a market share of 8.8 percentage points, more than double compared to the 3.8 percent share recorded in the second quarter of last year. The figure is the highest Samsung reached in the last four years and allowed it to take the title of the third largest phone vendor in Japan, Strategy Analytics said.
Apple and Sony maintained their lead in the local smartphone market, selling 3.3 million and 1.3 million devices over Q2 2017, respectively. Sharp was the next biggest handset vendor in the country after Samsung, managing to seize 6.3 percentage points of the market during the same period. The Japanese company was closely followed by Fujitsu and its market share of 6.1 percent. The South Korean tech giant will now likely be looking to increase its market share to over ten percent in the coming quarters, which is a figure that it was unable to hit since 2013. Samsung's market share in Japan has been declining from 2013 until last year, with most industry analysts attributing that downward trend to Apple and the popularity of iPhones in Japan that has been increasing over the same period. Local competitors also contributed to Samsung's declining market share in the Far Eastern country to a smaller degree, Strategy Analytics believes.
The market research firm stated that strong sales of the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus are the largest reason for Samsung's improved performance in Japan, noting how local consumer responded to the company's latest pair of Android-powered flagships in an extremely positive manner. The Galaxy S8 lineup also fueled Samsung's growth in a number of other markets and contributed to the overall performance of its smartphone division, as outlined by the tech giant's consolidated financial report for the second quarter of the year. The upcoming Galaxy Note 8 is expected to further boost the firm's sales figures in the third and final quarter of 2017, with most industry watchers predicting that the device will be a massive commercial hit.