IDC reported late yesterday that worldwide smartphone shipments were down 2.3% year over year in the second quarter of 2019 for the strongest quarterly performance since 2Q18.
Challenges were seen in many markets with China and the US experiencing the strongest quarterly declines. However, the fall in China during the first half of 2019 has been less severe than the second half of 2018, suggesting that some recovery is underway in the world's largest single market. Asia / Pacific (except Japan and China) continued the strong momentum of 2018 with shipments up more than 3% in the quarter driven by growth across India and many markets in Southeast Asia.
According to IDC's report, Apple shipped 33.8 million new iPhones in 2Q1
However, when considering the success of the iPhone upgrade program, as well as Apple's ability to sell more refurbished iPhones through its channels, the argument can easily be made that the position in the market is still dominant.
Regardless of slightly lower market share and unit sales prices, as pointed out in Apple's revenue, the iPhone-installed base continues to grow. So regardless of the hardware – like a new iPhone, an older model or a refurbished product – the expansion of iOS users is what seems to matter most in the future.
While it may be upsetting for anyone to see, IDC's chart shows that Apple was the only smartphone leader to decline year over year despite the generally positive news from Apple this week.
This week, Apple's CEO said during his Q3 Financial Conference opening conference, "For the iPhone, we generated $ 26 billion in revenue. Although this is down 12% from last year's June quarter, there is a significant improvement to the 17% year-over-year decline in Q2. We are encouraged by the results we see from the initiatives we talked about in January, including strong customer response to our in-store trade -in and financing programs.
Cook further noted that " In fact, the iPhone in retail and online stores, returned to growth on a year-over-year basis in June. Our active installed base of iPhone reached a new all-time high and was up year over year in each of our top 20 markets, underscoring the quality of our products and the satisfaction and loyalty of iPhone customers around the world. "
For IDC's commentary on Apple's competition Samsung, Huawei and others, read the full IDC report here.