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Android struggles against iPhone as US smartphone sales drop by a quarter

iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus

Sales of all smartphones have continued to decline in the US, but for Q2 2023, Apple's iPhone did dramatically better than Android.

US shipments of smartphones were already lower in Q1 2023 compared to the year before, but now Counterpoint Research says Q2 2023 figures are 24% down on the same period in 2022.

However, that is the overall decline and when broken out into Android and iPhone, the situation is different. During this quarter, Android shipments dropped 38% compared to Q2 2022, but Apple's iPhone only fell 6% YoY — and it increased its share of the market.

"Despite fewer shipments from Apple compared to the same quarter last year, the brand's share of shipments was still up 10% YoY," said Associate Research Director Hanish Bhatia. "Apple's resilience was driven by strong promotions across postpaid and prepaid. Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile continued to offer $800+ promo credits for the iPhone 14 while old-generation iPhones were also steeply discounted across prepaid."

Source: Counterpoint
Source: Counterpoint

While not giving figures, Counterpoint Research also says that foldable smartphones did better than the rest of the market.

"In spite of declining smartphone shipments, the foldable market reached important milestones in the quarter," said senior research analyst Maurice Klaehne. "Motorola launched the Razr+, its first foldable device in the US since 2021, and Google launched its first-ever foldable, the Pixel Fold, providing alternatives to the Samsung Galaxy foldables."

Samsung has now launched the next generations of its Galaxy Z Flip and Z Fold devices, and Counterpoint says it's possible that their popularity means "foldable shipments could reach their highest level ever in the US in Q3 2023."