Huawei Just Passed Apple in Smartphone Sales for the First Time Ever. Here’s Why CEO Tim Cook ‘Couldn’t Be Happier’

Apple is now a bronze medal winner, at least when it comes to smartphone sales.

Huawei has outperformed Apple in terms of units shipped for the second calendar quarter of 2018, according to data released by market research firms IDC, Canalys, Counterpoint Research and IHS Markit.

The Chinese smartphone maker now occupies second place among the world’s smartphone vendors, leaving Apple (AAPL) to tumble into third position — the first time it has been there for seven years. Samsung (SSNLF) remains the market leader.

While Apple reported strong results for its fiscal third quarter on Tuesday, the iPhone-maker narrowly missed Wall Street’s estimate of 41.79 million devices shipped for the quarter, shipping 41.3 million units instead. Huawei, meanwhile, shipped some 54.2 million handsets, according to preliminary IDC data.

Huawei registered a 40.9% year-on-year growth, whereas Apple logged a 17% revenue jump. The numbers lend Huawei a 15.8% market share, with Apple eating up 12.1%, according to IDC. South Korean Samsung enjoys a 20.9% slice of the pie.

Whilst it was the first time Apple had not been the number-one or number-two smartphone company in terms of market share since the second quarter of 2010, CEO chief executive Tim Cook said “We couldn’t be happier with how things are going,” according to a BBC report.

While Apple sold fewer devices than expected, the average iPhone price was $724, well above the expected $694.

Analysts attribute Huawei’s success to new features it has added to its smartphones, such as three cameras on its P20 Pro device, as well as ever-greater brand recognition in Europe and Asia.

The cameras recently built by Samsung, on the other hand, have been less successful. While the company is still in pole position in the smartphone race, it saw a 10.4% annual decline in its shipments, which it attributed to “lower-than-expected sales” of its flagship Galaxy S9 smartphone which, when launched in February, looked promising because of multiple camera tricks and slow-motion video capacities.

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