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iPhone 14 accounted for 19% of total iPhone sales in 2023

Apple, for the first time, captured the top seven positions in the global list of best-selling smartphones in 2023, according to Counterpoint Research’s Global Monthly Handset Model Sales Tracker. Samsung secured the remaining three places in the list, marking an increase of one spot from the 2022 list. There have been no other brands on the list since 2021. The combined market share of the top 10 smartphones reached the highest ever at 20% in 2023, up from 19% in 2022.

A chart showing Share of Global Top 10 Best-selling Smartphones, 2023

Apple’s iPhone 14 was the best-selling smartphone of 2023, with the US and China making up half of its sales. Further, the model contributed 19% of the total iPhone sales for 2023, down from the 2022 bestseller iPhone 13’s 28% share. Limited differentiation between the iPhone 13 and iPhone 14 led to lower adoption of the base variant and increased sales of the iPhone Pro variants, which offer substantial upgrades like Dynamic Island, a more advanced chipset and a higher display refresh rate. The iPhone 15 series took the top three spots on the global bestseller list for Q4 2023, with the iPhone 15 Pro Max becoming the best-selling smartphone.

Apple’s total sales remained flat in 2023 even as major competitors declined. This stability was partly due to a significant boost from emerging markets like India and the Middle East and Africa (MEA). In 2023, India became the fifth smartphone market to exceed 10 million iPhone unit sales in a single year, highlighting the market’s growing importance for Apple. These factors contributed to the iPhone 15 series sales matching the performance of the iPhone 14 series in 2022.

Apple’s iPhone 13, the oldest model on the list, maintained its fourth position with double-digit YoY volume growth in Japan and India. Carrier promotions in Japan drove sales of older iPhones over the newer generation, while in India, the iPhone 13’s value proposition made it a popular choice.

Samsung’s budget A series captured three spots in the top-10 list due to its strong value proposition and presence across various geographies and customer categories. The Samsung Galaxy A14 5G secured eighth place driven by high sales in the US and India. Notably, it was the best-selling smartphone in India for 2023. The only LTE-capable smartphones in the list, the Samsung Galaxy A04e and A14 4G secured the remaining two places thanks to their affordability driving sales in emerging markets like Brazil, India, Mexico and Indonesia.

We expect 2024’s top 10 best-selling smartphones to represent a larger proportion of total smartphone sales as OEMs are focusing on leaner portfolios. Further, we expect Chinese brands to enter the list. And with OEMs increasingly launching 5G-only models, 2024’s top 10 will likely be 5G-only. Counterpoint Research

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