Samsung has regained the number one slot in global smartphone market share from Huawei, according to the latest shipment figures from market-tracker IDC.
Overall, smartphone shipments were down 1.3 per cent for the period as gadget spending was diverted to laptops and tablets - most vividly in Apple's up-ended numbers (see below).
IDC says Huawei suffered a 22 per cent decline versus the year-ago quarter during the three months to September 30.
The Chinese giant has suffered from US sanctions, which have crimped its access to Google's Android operating system, the Google Play store, and apps like Gmail and Google Maps.
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Huawei plans to launch phones running on its own Harmony software in the coming weeks, but its local operation recently conceded that the US ban - which it sees as politically charged - has hurt its handset sales in New Zealand. With the company also blocked from 5G infrastructure, it's seeking to fill the gap with a push into business-to-business videoconferencing products and - in a complete switch-up for the local market - solar energy products.
Fellow Chinese phone makers Xiaomi and Vivo have taken up a lot of the slack. Along with compatriot Oppo, they have so far escaped any sanctions (which is good news for Google, plus US hardware companies like Intel, Broadcom and Qualcomm that supply them with tens of billions of dollars worth of components).
Apple fell 10.6 per cent against the year-ago quarter. Its handset sales typically slow in the September quarter as users anticipate its annual announcement of new models.
But the phenomenon was exacerbated by Covid-19 delays this year (the pandemic has had a mixed effect for the company, which today reported quarterly iPhone sales of US$26.44b, down 20 per cent year-on-year by dollar value, but Mac sales that jumped by a third to US$9.03B and iPad sales that surged from US$4.6b to US$6.8b amid the remote-working boom - allowing the company to make overall revenue gains.
Apple will be banking on the new iPhone 12 range - which adds 5G support - to make gains during the current quarter. IDC says it's already seeing strong early demand for the new models.
Telcos says Apple's embrace of 5G will help push the new mobile technology into the mainstream.
But, notably, market leader Samsung did not bring the 5G version of its new Galaxy S20 FE ($1099) to New Zealand.