Samsung Takes Back Smartphone Crown From Apple; Xiaomi Surges

Samsung Electronics (OTC:SSNLF) Co Ltd snatched back the crown from Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) as the world’s biggest smartphone producer, accounting for a fifth of overall global sales in the first quarter.

China’s Xiaomi (OTC:XIACF) Corp clocked its best quarterly performance ever, with shipments surging 62% to 49 million phones and market share to 14%, taking it to the third position after Samsung (KS:005930) and Apple.

Overall, global sales surged 27% to 347 million units in the first quarter as the Chinese economy opened up after the pandemic and a swift vaccine rollout in the United States raised hopes of an economic recovery.

South Korea’s Samsung shipped 76.5 million smartphones in the quarter to grab a 22% share of the market. The company on Thursday reported a 66% surge in quarterly profit in its mobile business, thanks to robust sales of its flagship Galaxy S21 smartphone series.

People upgrading to the new iPhone still drove sales, though, and the company said on Wednesday that overall sales to China nearly doubled.

Last year, people shopped for smartphones and gadgets as they stayed indoors because of the coronavirus pandemic, fuelling a global shortage in semiconductor chips that has roiled industries including autos and white goods.