Report: Q2 smartphone sales growth slowest since 2013

Gartner has released its analysis of the worldwide smartphone market for the last quarter.  The report, uh, reports the market's lowest quarterly growth rate since 2013, as well as Android's all-time lowest year-on-year growth.

First, let's talk about smartphone sales in general. According to Gartner, vendors sold 330 million phones worldwide, which represented a 13.5% year-on-year increase. However, last quarter also saw the slowest growth in sales since 2013. The Eastern European, Middle East, Africa, and Asia and Pacific markets saw the biggest growth during the last quarter, except for China, where sales dropped 4% versus last year. Gartner cites saturation in the lower-end phone segment as the main reason for the drop. This downturn significantly affected the market as a whole, given that China accounts for 30% of worldwide phone sales.

As for phone manufacturers' scorecards, Samsung is still in a rough patch. Gartner says the Korean company now holds 21.9% of the market, a 4.3% drop since Q2 2014. Meanwhile, Apple, Huawei, and Xiaomi all saw their respective market shares rise. Cupertino achieved a 2.4% year-on-year increase in market share, fueled in part by a 68% increase in Chinese sales. iPhone sales overall were up 36% year-on-year, and Gartner says Apple's growth in the high-end segment is chipping away at its rivals' premium phone sales and profit margins. The Chinese market was also a big win for Huawei, whose total sales climbed 46.3% year-on-year.

Let's break down operating systems now. iOS' market share rose to 14.6%, a 2.4% year-on-year rise made at everybody elses's expense. Android's share dropped 1.6% to 82.2%. Windows Phone lost 0.3%, and currently sits at 2.5%. BlackBerry is nearly extinct—its 0.7% market share in Q2 2014 decreased to only 0.3%. Gartner also notes Android phone sales saw their slowest year-on-year growth ever at 11%. It attributes the slowdown to weak performance in the Chinese market, where Apple took away market share in the last three quarters.

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