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Apple actually lost U.S. market share in Q3 despite iPhone 6 launch

Updated Dec 26th, 2019 11:40PM EST
iPhone 6 vs. Android Smartphones
Image: Jonathan Geller, BGR

A new report from Kantar WorldPanel ComTech reveals that huge iPhone 6 demand helped Apple last quarter, with the company seeing market share increases in various European markets. However, Apple’s market share actually dropped in Apple’s home country during the period, hitting 32.6% in the September quarter, a 3.3% drop compared to last year.

FROM EARLIER: You might not be able to find an iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus in stores this Christmas

“Despite Apple’s share declining 3 percentage points in the three months ending in September, compared with the same period last year, it is clear that demand for the iPhone 6 has been very healthy,” Kantar wrote.

Apple sold more than 10 million iPhone 6 units during the launch weekend, and a record 39.3 million iPhone handsets in the third quarter, according to Apple’s earnings report. Even still, the record sales weren’t enough to keep Apple’s U.S. market share from sliding.

“Our latest data covers the first few days of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus being available in Europe and it is clear that demand has been high for the eagerly awaited new models,” Kantar’s strategic insight director Dominic Sunnebo said. “In Great Britain, where the new iPhone models started shipping on 19 September, Apple saw its sales share up by 1.7% compared with the same period last year, taking share of iOS to 31%. Across the major European markets, where the new iPhone models were made available between the 19 and 26 September, initial sales of the new iPhone models have overwhelmingly been from existing iPhone owners (87%).”

“Apple has also experienced market share and volume increases across all major European markets, as well as in China and Australia, in part thanks to the launch of its new handsets. Across Europe’s top five markets, the iPhone 6 has outsold the larger iPhone 6 Plus by five-to-one,” he added.

Apple slightly increased its market share in China compared to last year (1.4% to 15.2%), though it suffered the most in Japan during the period, where iPhone market share dropped by 15.9% to 31.3%.

Apple likely isn’t concerned with market share, as the company is selling every iPhone 6 model it can make, according to recent comments made by Tim Cook during the company’s Q4 FY2014 conference call. More recently, Apple’s Greg Joswiak said at Re/code’s Code/Mobile event that Apple doesn’t care about market share, choosing to focus instead on making the “the best products with the best experience,” even if that means selling only premium devices.

A table showing iPhone, Android and Windows market share in various markets, as provided by Kantar, follows below.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.