Apple's iPhone remains the largest premium smartphone brand with over 70% of market share

Shawn Knight

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In brief: End-of-year numbers are still being finalized but based on early estimates, it appears as if the premium smartphone segment (those with a wholesale price of at least $600) had a record-setting 2023. Apple remains on top by far with 71% market share, followed by Samsung with 17% globally.

Market research firm Counterpoint said global premium sales in 2023 likely grew six percent year over year, a record for the segment and in contrast to the projected decline of the overall phone market.

Should the projection prove accurate, it means that nearly one in four smartphones sold globally in 2023 (24 percent) fell into the premium category. That is up from a 21 percent share in 2022 and 19 percent the year before. What's more, a full 60 percent of market revenues come from premium device sales.

Counterpoint senior analyst Varun Mishra noted that the shift in consumer smartphone buying patterns directly correlates to the increased importance these devices hold in our daily lives. As such, people are willing to spend more for a higher quality device that can be used for a longer period of time.

For others, owning a cutting-edge smartphone has become a status symbol. This is especially true in emerging markets where waves of consumers are transitioning from mid-range phones to premium handsets, often thanks to favorable financing options and seasonal promotions.

Arguably even more interesting is the brand breakdown. Apple maintained its lead in the premium segment in 2023 despite its share falling from 75 percent in 2022 to 71 percent last year.

Samsung gained one percentage point during the same span to reach 17 percent thanks to strong sales of its traditional Galaxy S23 and its two best-selling foldables, the Galaxy S Flip 5, and the Galaxy Z Fold 5. According to Display Supply Chain Consultants (DSCC), Samsung's two foldables captured 45 percent and 24 percent market share in Q3, respectively.

Huawei increased its share by two percent to finish at five percent. Huawei had a strong showing in China driven by the Mate 60 series, Counterpoint said.

Image credit: Amanz

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When people ask why nobody has money: here you go. This is where its going. Everyone I know who complains about being broke has a fruit phone, without fail. Usually on the now 36 month payment plans where they think the $5 is all they are being charged.

I tried an iphone, I couldn't get over the price for a 15 plus, let alone a pro max. And the fact you cant do site settings on iOS is just.....SMH. Also, holy jesus the thing go hot while charging. How? My moto thinkphone I replaced it with charges at 3x the speed of an iphone an doesnt get hot to the touch.
 
Many people use premium smartphones, such as iPhones, not only because it has cool models, quality components, mature software, and durability but also for the social life of the user..
well, at least it happened in my place..
 
I like to get the "base" premium models, as I can always justify these models on a price/feature scale relevant to me, and see them through for a few years until upgrade.

For example, I went from an iPhone 7, to an iPhone 12.

Last year when I was looking to upgrade from my 12 (because the battery performance just wasn't cutting it any more), I had a look at the base iPhone prices at the time.

NOPE.

Apple priced themselves out of my budget comfort zone. $1500 (AUD) for the latest iPhone is crazy expensive IMO.

After much research I ended up getting a Galaxy S23 for $950 (AUD) on sale. At least Android phones seem to actually go on sale - iPhones (at least in Australia) seem to just stay at their RRP forever, even after a new model releases. The iPhone 13 is still $1100 (AUD). Like who is paying this much for a 2 and a half year old phone!?

The hardest part was getting all my stuff out of iCloud and cleaning it all up. It was worth it though as it forced me to organise everything better.
 
I've used androids for over 10 years, October 2012 to November 2023. The iPhone 15 Pro is my first Apple product and I'm not looking back. There's a reason they're considered the premium product.
 
Face it, if you buy an iPhone, any iPhone, you're guaranteed to get at least five years of mainstream software support. And then there's extended software support where Apple is updating older versions of iOS. That means you don't necessarily have to get the latest and greatest iPhone, you can get an older iPhone and you're guaranteed to have years of software updates. Beat that Android! Oh yeah, you can't.

Swappa is your friend if you're looking for older and cheaper iPhones. You can get a used iPhone for under $600, sometimes even less than $400.

With that being said, it's no wonder the iPhone commands such a huge percentage of the market.
 
I love tech, but my $400 2019 Xiaomi still does everything I need. Fingerprint logins and Google Pay still impress me. I'm not chasing OS and security updates although they are nice to have.

The smaller players try harder than Apple and Samsung in my opinion, so I avoid those two.
 
Face it, if you buy an iPhone, any iPhone, you're guaranteed to get at least five years of mainstream software support. And then there's extended software support where Apple is updating older versions of iOS. That means you don't necessarily have to get the latest and greatest iPhone, you can get an older iPhone and you're guaranteed to have years of software updates. Beat that Android! Oh yeah, you can't.

Swappa is your friend if you're looking for older and cheaper iPhones. You can get a used iPhone for under $600, sometimes even less than $400.

With that being said, it's no wonder the iPhone commands such a huge percentage of the market.
Pixel 8 has longer support than Apple
 
Pixel 8 has longer support than Apple

I have a fully functional Iphone 7 plus next to my 13 pro; its released back in 2016, and pretty much 9 years of age. Still getting updates - however the major IOS updates have stopped. and if there's for example an app that requires the latest IOS, it won't work. But security updates? Yes.

Does still what any other phone does.
 
Pixel 8 has longer support than Apple
Pixel has famously weak batteries. Also, I recall it is not as good at running games as other top of the line devices from other brands. They are still a new at using their own processors. And just like any other young players, they are not as good as those who released these processors for a very long time.
I like the idea of getting a pixel eventually. But it would not be today's Pixel, they still have a long road ahead.
 
Pixel 8 has longer support than Apple
That's yet to be seen, we've seen these promises from other Android phone providers and none of them made it to "7 years" or whatever they tried to advertise.

Google so far doesn't have a track record to prove they actually will support a phone for that long. Apple does.
 
That's yet to be seen, we've seen these promises from other Android phone providers and none of them made it to "7 years" or whatever they tried to advertise.

Google so far doesn't have a track record to prove they actually will support a phone for that long. Apple does.
I'm unaware of any android manufacturer that has failed to live up to update promises. Mind providing some examples?
I have a fully functional Iphone 7 plus next to my 13 pro; its released back in 2016, and pretty much 9 years of age. Still getting updates - however the major IOS updates have stopped. and if there's for example an app that requires the latest IOS, it won't work. But security updates? Yes.

Does still what any other phone does.
Funny, my moto z play from 2016 hasnt received updates in years but can still run the latest apps, because on android your OS and apps are not forcibly linked together, and the apps are sandboxed, so I'm running the most up to date versions despite the old OS.
Pixel has famously weak batteries. Also, I recall it is not as good at running games as other top of the line devices from other brands. They are still a new at using their own processors. And just like any other young players, they are not as good as those who released these processors for a very long time.
I like the idea of getting a pixel eventually. But it would not be today's Pixel, they still have a long road ahead.
Weak batteries didnt deter anyone from iphones prior to the 11 lineup, where 4-5 hours SoT was the best you could hope for.
 
I'm unaware of any android manufacturer that has failed to live up to update promises. Mind providing some examples?
Sony was my personal experience, bought the Xperia XZ Premium under the illusion I'd get "3 years of software updates" and absolutely did not, barely made it to 2 years. You'll find others reporting on this one with comments similar to mine "didn't they promise 3 years of updates and they barely made it to 2..."

HMD Global is notorious for promising updates and simply not delivering them, I think this quote from a Motorola rep sums it up quite nicely:

“Each device has its own merit in terms of where it needs to be updated and how many updates it does get. We do commit on the one OS update, and obviously, we continue to review that. If we do find that the device has a longer life cycle in the market, we’ll obviously review to see whether it needs more OS upgrades.”

While the company later retracted this statement, it is very much an accidentally spoken truth when you take a step back to look at how companies actually update their phones.

A lot of these companies, basically all of them except for Apple and Google, run off sales numbers to decide on when to push out updates, if it didn't sell all that well, it doesn't matter what you promised or what you marketed, you just won't update them or do it "in the coming weeks" which turns into months and even sometimes, years.

Personally, my Google Pixel phone was the only phone to get prompt updates in the Android world, Sony, OnePlus, Samsung, Motorola, Nokia, all crap from my experience.

Apple though have proven over many years, they really will support an iPhone for 5+ years and they've done this across the product range consistently.

Googles promise of 7 years is nice, and Google are the most prompt with their software updates, but they haven't actually provided updates to any of their phones for more than 3 years so far, they have many more years to actually prove they can and will do it.
 
When people ask why nobody has money: here you go. This is where its going. Everyone I know who complains about being broke has a fruit phone, without fail. Usually on the now 36 month payment plans where they think the $5 is all they are being charged.

I tried an iphone, I couldn't get over the price for a 15 plus, let alone a pro max. And the fact you cant do site settings on iOS is just.....SMH. Also, holy jesus the thing go hot while charging. How? My moto thinkphone I replaced it with charges at 3x the speed of an iphone an doesnt get hot to the touch.
BUT MY PARENTS BOUGHT A HOUSE AT MY AGE! Meanwhile, money was spent on Apple products, expensive clothes, a bunch of subscriptions etc...IMO, if you have money to afford all that, you have too much money.
 
That right there is the most important thing of all.

Most iOS apps are still supporting iOS 15.

Yep and it will be like that for some time. The hardware (esp on the higher end models) is superior and will last you for some years to come.

Putting the two devices together, the Iphone 13 pro obviously does things 10x faster at the same or even better efficiency rate.

The quality of battery's is also outstanding. I'm not talking about the refurbished or clone battery's that a lot of shops seems to implement.

99.9% of the time I put my 13 into battery saving mode; and ive bin consistently charging till 80%. The phone lasts 1.5 day which is perfect for my conditions that I'm using it for.

And by charging to 80% and not 100% your actually extending the life of the battery. Similar as preserving a bunch of blocks on a SSD to slow down the wear proces.

at the end of the day phones are still considered a "thrown away" object - we live in a consumption civilisation and people barely re-use older phones.

Buying a used high end phone is not bad either. Many company's do that and even provide warranty on those devices, and often with a brand new screen and / or battery.

Not one out of the 7 iphones I had in the past had issues with battery's as in expanding or even catching fire. I would be careful with those cheap chinese type of phones.
 
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