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Apple iPhone Captures HALF of Global Smartphone Revenues in Q4 2017

by Neil Mawston | Feb 15, 2018

According to the latest research from our Wireless Smartphone Strategies (WSS) service, global smartphone revenues hit an  all-time high of US$120 billion during the fourth quarter of 2017.

Apple captured a record 51 percent global smartphone revenue share, accounting for more than the rest of the entire industry combined.

We estimate total global smartphone wholesale revenues grew 8 percent annually to reach an all-time high of US$120 billion during Q4 2017. The smartphone industry’s wholesale average selling price surged 18 percent annually from US$255 in Q4 2016 to US$300 in Q4 2017. The smartphone industry has managed to increase massively its pricing and revenues, despite a recent decrease in shipment volumes.

Apple iPhone captured a record 51 percent share of all smartphone wholesale revenues worldwide in Q4 2017. Apple iPhone generated a huge US$61 billion in the quarter, helped by solid demand for its premium X model, and Apple now accounts for more revenue than the rest of the entire global smartphone industry combined. Apple generated three times more smartphone revenue than nearest rival Samsung and 7 times more than Huawei. Apple iPhone’s average selling price is approaching US$800 and almost three times higher than the overall industry average. Apple iPhone is an incredible money-making machine.

Samsung grew its global smartphone wholesale revenues by 16 percent annually to US$19 billion in Q4 2017. Like Apple, Samsung’s smartphone wholesale average selling price (ASP) grew strongly, rising 21 percent annually to US$254 in the quarter. The popularity of premium Note 8 and Galaxy S8 models, as well as fewer low-end sales in its core Asia markets such as China, drove the growth.

Huawei generated US$8 billion of global smartphone wholesale revenues to maintain its position as the world’s third largest vendor by turnover in Q4 2017. Huawei’s smartphone wholesale average selling price sits at US$205 today and it has by far the lowest pricing among the top-three smartphone players. If Huawei wants to grow its worldwide pricing and revenues even higher in the future, the company will need to grab additional marketshare in the high-value United States market.

Exhibit 1: Global Smartphone Wholesale Revenues by Vendor in Q4 2017


[1]  Numbers are rounded. The data-table includes global smartphone hardware revenues only. Wholesale refers to the trade price, NOT the retail price. Wholesale revenues are calculated as shipments multiplied by wholesale average selling price.

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