Saturday, July 28, 2012

Analysts estimate Samsung shipped nearly double the smartphones as Apple in CYQ2 2012

Apple's fiscal Q3 2012 financial report, released a few days ago, showed iPhone sales that underperformed analyst estimates. Late Thursday, market research firms IDC and Strategy Analytics (S.A.) explained that the beneficiary of that drop-off in iPhone sales is its huge rival, Samsung.

Iolo technologies, LLC
You might have already expected that. After all, Samsung and Apple are in a tight battle for global smartphone sales, and Samsung has wrested control of overall cell phone sales from Nokia. What you might not have expected was how well Samsung did.

S.A. said that Samsung shipped nearly twice as many smartphones as Apple during the second quarter of 2012 (which is Apple's fiscal Q3). The belief, as was mentioned earlier when Apple's performance fell short of analyst estimates, is that customers are holding off iPhone purchases in anticipation of a rumored new iPhone 5 by October, research firm Strategy Analytics said late Thursday.

Strategy Analytics said that while global smartphone shipments grew 32 percent annually to 146 million units in the second quarter, that was the slowest growth rate since the third quarter of 2009. It's true that as smartphones begin to predominate the market for cell phones, overall, there will be less room for growth, and this too, could affect Apple's numbers.

However, the slowdown didn't seem to affect Samsung's numbers. Samsung shipped 50.5 million units in the quarter for a market share of 34.6 percent, while Apple shipped 26 million units for a 17.8 percent market share, or slightly more than half of Samsung's shipments. In addition, Apple's market share stayed flat year-over-year, at 18.4 percent.

Samsung's smartphones shipments were more than double its the same quarter last year, when the South Korean giant shipped 20.2 million smartphones.

Rival market research firm IDC confirmed similar results. According to IDC, folks (such as Apple shareholders) should not be concerned about the iPhone numbers is not unusual as iPhone shipment volume is highest in the first two quarters after its release, and slows as people anticipate the new iPhone.

This year's iPhone is expected to sport a faster processor, based on the Samsung Exynos quad-core SOC, LTE, in-cell touch panels (which will mean a thinner screen) and a larger screen (with, ironically, a smaller dock connector). A number of other changes are expected.

"What remains to be seen is how the company's smartphones will fare against Apple's next-generation iPhone expected later this year," IDC said.

What's meant by that is "how well will Samsung's current hot hardware, the Samsung Galaxy S III, fare when compared to the iPhone 5 in October (or so)?" In this industry, a difference in months often means a difference in hardware obsolescence, as well.

While Apple will release an iPhone 5 later this year, it is also expected that the company will launch a smaller tablet, which may or may not be called the iPad mini, alongside it.  The iPad mini is rumored to sport a 7.85-inch screen with a non-retina display, and is expected to be priced to challenge lower-priced Android tablets.

No comments: