Transsion and Huawei Ranked Among Top Three Smartphone Makers in Africa

Chinese smartphone makers are making headway in global expansion as Transsion and Huawei are ranked as top three smartphone brands in Africa, according to the latest figures announced on Nov. 27 by International Data Corporation (IDC).

2018 has not been a great year for smartphone makers as global smartphone sales have been seeing a decline. Africa was unfortunately unable to escape the tides of decline as well as its mobile phone market experienced a 2.1 percent quarter on quarter decline in Q3 2018.

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According to IDC, Transsion, Samsung, and Huawei dominated the smartphone space with respective unit shares of 34.9 percent, 21.7 percent, and 10.2 percent. However, in value terms, Samsung led the smartphone market with a 37.2 percent share, followed by Transsion (21.0 percent) and Huawei (13.0 percent).

Huawei P20 smartphone (source: Huawei)

“The decline in Nigeria stemmed from a slowdown in government spending, ongoing warfare in the country’s northern states, and market uncertainty in the lead up to elections,” says George Mbuthia, a research analyst at IDC.

Mbunthia explained that, “In South Africa, the market’s growth was spurred by the penetration of low-end devices from brands such as Mobicel, Mint, and Nokia, while the launch of entry-level smartphones helped drive growth in Kenya despite increases in taxes and fuel prices placing a significant burden on disposable income in the country”

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Feature phones are mobile phones that incorporate features such as the ability to access the Internet and store and play music but lack the advanced functionality of a smartphone.

While feature phones remain steadfastly popular across Africa, particularly in more rural areas, consumers are being increasingly attracted by smartphone offerings from Chinese brands such as Xiaomi, Oppo, and Huawei, due to their much more affordable prices.

“There is a new wave of Chinese brands aggressively pursuing growth opportunities in the region, while the more-established Huawei is also accelerating its marketing efforts and expanding its distribution budget,” says Ramazan Yavuz, a research manager at IDC.

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