According to Strategy Analytics, Huawei claimed a significant 37% market share of 5G phone sales last year, with the total number of 5G phones being sold numbering 19 million handsets globally. Huawei made up 6.9 million of these sales, placing it as a top vendor.
The Chinese company topped the list, beating out competition from the likes of Samsung, which sold 6.7 million 5G devices last year.
Huawei’s performance was particularly impressive considering that the vendor was banned from the US following security concerns. This didn’t seem to have a significant effect on sales at all.
"Demand for 5G smartphones is higher than many expected," Ken Hyers, director at Strategy Analytics, said in a recent statement. "Fierce vendor competition in China and heavy carrier subsidies across South Korea have been the main drivers of 5G demand. Other regions, like the US and Europe, are lagging behind Asia, but we expect them to close the gap later this year."
Most sales were in China
The Strategy Analytics report shows that almost all of Huawei's 5G phones were shipped in China. The most popular models include the Mate 20 X 5G and Mate 30 Pro 5G, the report says.
"Upcoming 5G models from Apple iPhone and other big brands mean 5G will be the hottest part of the worldwide smartphone market this year," said Neil Mawston, executive director at Strategy Analytics. "However, the recent coronavirus scare is currently restricting trade in some parts of China, and this may well cause a slowdown in 5G supply or demand across Asia or worldwide during the first half of 2020. Industry players should be prepared for bumpy 5G sales in some markets."
As 5G begins to take off, Huawei might have to push harder to maintain a lead over its competitors. However, the longer Apple takes to deliver its 5G iPhone, the better for other companies with 5G offerings.