The US smartphone sales in December 2020 came in at 14.9 million units and Apple drove the market, increasing its share of sales by almost one third, said a new report.
The US smartphone market showed further resilience during December, building on growth momentum through the fourth quarter to post sell-through figures similar to last year, said Counterpoint Research's 'Monthly Market Pulse Report'.
The December US smartphone sales were in-line with December 2019. offsetting significant YoY declines by almost all major vendors, except Samsung.
The sell-through of the premium ($600-800) and super-premium (above $800) end of the market grew by a combined 54 per cent YoY in December, to account for almost two thirds of the overall market.
"Apple and Samsung were the only vendors to perform well on a YoY basis, but we saw LG, OnePlus and others improve (on-month), buoyed by the popularity of flagship devices during the holiday season," said Jeff Fieldhack, Director of US Mobile Devices and Carrier Strategies at Counterpoint.
"Not only did carriers have great trade-in and free device deals, but there was a lot of marketing around 5G, with many promotions offering subscriptions to services like Disney+, ESPN+, Hulu, HBO Max and other media," Fieldhack added in a statement on Friday.
Shift to 5G
The shift to 5G is happening, making these sorts of content bundles a viable strategy for mobile operators. "It has helped energise the smartphone market, with 5G device sales now making up around 65 per cent of all smartphones sold in the US." said Senior Analyst Maurice Klaehne. "It is helping raise overall ASPs and, of course, device specifications."
Consumers' hardware preferences also moved up towards bigger and better displays, higher memory and processing capacity, and triple and quad camera set-ups. "We are seeing many of these trends play out globally, but they have been especially pronounced here in the US," Klaehne said.