The Smartphone market in Africa has grown intensively in 2021. One can say the COVID-19 pandemic made this possible – as everyone tried to maintain an effective virtual means of communication for personal and business purposes.
A report from International Data Corporation (IDC) identifies in its newly released Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker data “that Africa’s overall mobile phone market enjoyed year-on-year (YoY) growth of 14.0% in Q1 2021 to total 53.3 million units. The region’s smartphone market grew 16.8% over the same period to 23.4 million units, while the feature phone market was up 11.9% to 29.9 million units”.
According to a report by Statscounter, which lists the top six smartphone brands in the market, Samsung maintains the lead, followed by Apple, Xiaomi, Techno, Infinix, and Oppo.
Currently, one would think that Apple has captured the majority of the African market. But Samsung is clearly the popular choice on the continent. The resort shows that Samsung leads with 31.54% while Apple follows with a market share of 14.9%. However, with the constant love brawl between the two brands, there is every possibility of a new stats result.
The business models of both firms are continually converging and changing, yet there are still significant differences. Samsung has been a global power for longer and has seen more expansion than any other company in its space. Apple’s ascension has been comparatively rapid. Let’s look at the top six smartphone brands in Africa.
Samsung, a South Korean multinational manufacturing conglomerate, remains the leading brand in Africa and is getting identified according to market analysis as the best-selling smartphone.
So far, Samsung has maintained its number one position, with shipments exceeding 58 million units, although its market share fell to 18% from 22% in Q1 2021, as shipments fell by 24% QoQ.
The Counterpoint Research Market Pulse report revealed that the company boosted market spending at the start of the year, leading to excellent performance because of production disruption in Vietnam following COVID-19.
The American multinational company, Apple, leads as the second position in market shares. Apple has concentrated on expanding revenues in the most recent fiscal year, because of consumer hesitance in upgrading their smartphones.
Apple officials announced in January that the business had 1.5 billion active devices on its network and expected to reach 600 million users to its own or third-party services by the end of the year.
Xiaomi’s market share increased this past year. Major areas such as Egypt, Kenya, Morocco, and Nigeria increased, causing exports percentage to climb up. This has made the Chinese-based smartphone manufacturer take the lead in the market space.
The expansion of its offline presence in Africa has helped in managing channels directly and gaining market share. Some of Xiaomi’s products closely compete with Samsung.
Tecno’s ethos is based on a business approach called “glocalisation”, which involves developing products that may be tailored to individual markets or areas. This strategy represents Tecno transition from an Africa-focused brand to a newcomer in the global emerging markets’ mid-to-high-end smartphone category.
“This has helped Tecno grow into one of the most admired smartphone brands in Africa, as well as an expert in providing industrial-leading technology and innovative devices designed for global users in emerging markets,” explains Stephen Ha, General Manager at Tecno.
Today, Tecno’s product line is enriched by its quad-core smartphone, providing consumers with high-quality middle and high-end smart devices.
Between 2019-2020, Infinix ranked as the smartphone brand of the year in Africa. One would have thought that the accolades may have distracted the Hong-Kong based company, but they have remained focused.
The brand’s essence is ‘The Future is Now’ and most of its activities involve empowering consumers to experience their future now. As a result, the brand is quickly becoming a favourite among consumers, particularly the youth.
Oppo stands as the biggest smartphone manufacturer in China. Recently, Oppos has ranked among the 100 most desirable brands in Africa and in today’s Statcounter, the brand ranks six.
In recent years, the brand has shifted its focus to prospective African markets, working relentlessly to ensure that the continent, as a developing market in the global marketplace, has fair access to premium high-end technology while maintaining the brand’s worldwide standards.
The Statcounter is a tentative figure, it varies. Tomorrow, a new brand could take off and take the market by storm. The competition is ultimately favourable to the end consumer as it has a direct impact on the pricing and frequency of the development of functional features.
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