Level 29
Troubled smartphone maker Huawei continues to be the second largest manufacturer according to new data provided by Gartner, after it recorded a substantial sales increase in the first quarter of 2019.

Huawei sold a total of 58.4 million units in Q1 2019, up from 40.4 million units in the same quarter a year ago. The Chinese company, which continues to be runner-up to Samsung, increased its market share from 10.5% to 15.7% year-over-year.

Meanwhile, both Samsung and Apple declined during the quarter.

The South Korean company sold 71.6 million smartphones in Q1, down from 78.5 million units a year ago, while its market share dropped from 20.5% to 19.2%.

At the same time, rival Apple fell 2.2% in terms of market share, accounting for 11.9% of all sales in the quarter. Apple sold a total of 44.5 million iPhones versus 54 million in Q1 2018.

Difficult times ahead
While Huawei’s performance is a particular highlight of the quarter, especially as global sales dropped 2.7% to 373 million units, the data doesn’t include shipments recorded by the Chinese company after the US ban announced by President Trump in mid-May.

Gartner says Huawei’s performance is mostly based on strong performance in Europe and China, where it recorded growth of 69% and 33%, respectively, but projects particular challenges following the restrictions set by the United States government.

“Unavailability of Google apps and services on Huawei smartphones, if implemented, will upset Huawei’s international smartphone business which is almost half of its worldwide phone business. Not the least it brings apprehension among buyers, limiting Huawei’s growth in the near term,” said Anshul Gupta, senior research director at Gartner.

According to the US ban, Huawei is no longer allowed to use products developed by American companies, which means the company can’t install Android and Windows on its devices. Huawei is already working on its own operating system to replace both, but sales in the short term are likely to be impacted.