Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) announced it sold more smartphones than its main competitor Samsung for the first time since 2011. The numbers were for the fourth quarter of 2014 and could be seen as a confirmation that the company’s new, larger screen version is a success. All told, the company sold 74.8 million devices and that equated to a market share of 20.4%. Its rival, Samsung, sold 73 million devices for a total market share of 19.9%. In the same period of 2013, Apple had only sold 50.2 million devices while Samsung sold 83.3 million of their version. That equated to a market share of 17.8% for Apple and 29.5% for Samsung.
Fourth Quarter Surprise
The numbers were an important victory for Apple as it showed how much Samsung’s efforts have deteriorated as compared to the new iPhones popularity. Samsung lost almost 10% of its prized market share during that period. Samsung’s sales peaked in 2013 but have since then faced relentless pressure from Apple’s new product releases and a large basket of Chinese vendors. This creates a unique problem for Samsung as Apple dominates the premium market and the Chinese vendors control the discounted market.
Royalties through Apps
Analysts feel Samsung’s only opportunity to catch the tech giants revitalized sales is through the royalties offered by robust apps and content. Also, by providing unique services not available in competitor’s versions, it could find a means to recoup some of the market share lost. This could be tough and Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has the advantage so far. The strong sales numbers come as Samsung is about to release its Galaxy 6 but sales could be tempered as Apple has already put a large number of units in consumers hands.
After setting an all-time high, the stock is consolidating at the current level. As long as it does not lose support at $127.50, it should be fine. If it does violate support the next safety net is at $120.