Smartphone sales declined 20 percent year-over-year due to the pandemic

People are still reluctant to upgrade their smartphones

Editor’s take: The global pandemic is continuing to wreak havoc on the smartphone industry. With two straight quarters of sales that are down more than 20 percent year-over-year and the looming holiday season, it’s anyone’s guess as to what the second half of 2020 – and beyond – will look like for smartphone makers.
Research and advisory firm Gartner on Tuesday said global smartphone sales reached 295 million units during the second quarter of 2020. While that is certainly a big number, it’s a decline of more than 20 percent compared to the 370 million handsets shipped during the same period in 2019.

Naturally, some companies were impacted more than others.

Samsung sold 27.1 percent fewer smartphones in 2Q20 versus the year-ago quarter while Xiaomi saw sales drop by 21.5 percent, from 33.3 million to 26.1 million units. “Demand for its [Samsung] flagship S Series smartphones did little to revive its smartphone sales globally,” said Anshul Gupta, senior research director at Gartner.

Huawei finished right alongside Samsung with 54.13 million smartphones sold during the quarter, good enough for a “virtual tie” according to Gartner.

Of the top five manufacturers, Apple fared the best with a year-over-year decline of just 0.4 percent. Annette Zimmermann, research vice president at Gartner, said the launch of the second-gen iPhone SE and an improved business environment in China helped the Cupertino-based company during the quarter.

Global smartphone sales in the second quarter nearly mirrored what we saw in the first quarter, with sales differing by only 0.2 percent.