Lenovo and Xiaomi pushed out of top five smartphone brands

Global smartphone sales figures for Q1 2016 are out, and it hasn't been a great start to the year for Lenovo and Xiaomi. Both vendors have lost their sports as the fourth- and fifth-largest smartphone makers, conceding to Oppo and Vivo.

From IDC senior research manager Melissa Chau:

Along China's maturing smartphone adoption curve, the companies most aligned with growth are those with products serving increasingly sophisticated consumers. Lenovo benefited with ASPs below US$150 in 2013, and Xiaomi picked up the mantle with ASPs below US$200 in 2014 and 2015. Now Huawei, OPPO, and vivo, which play mainly in the sub-US$250 range, are positioned for a strong 2016.

IDC says that Oppo netted over 18.5 million shipments in Q1 2016, a YoY growth of 153.2% that now sees the vendor in fourth place with a market share of 5.5%. With 14.3 million shipments and a YoY growth of 123.8%, Vivo clinched the fifth spot. Both Chinese manufacturers have set up a robust distribution network in emerging markets, catering to lower-tier cities. As the Chinese market is getting saturated, brands are looking to India for future growth. Both Oppo and Vivo have made large strides in the country this year, setting up manufacturing facilities and a strong retail presence.

Meanwhile, Samsung has maintained its lead as the number one smartphone vendor with 81.9 million shipments accounting for a market share of 24.5%, a minor decrease from the 24.6% the vendor registered during the same period last year. Apple is in second place with 51.2 million shipments, down from 61.2 million managed in Q1 2015. The decrease sees the vendor's market share decline from 18.3% to 15.3%.

Huawei is in third place with 27.5 million shipments and an 8.2% market share, with a YoY increase of 58.4%.

Harish Jonnalagadda
Senior Editor - Asia

Harish Jonnalagadda is a Senior Editor overseeing Asia at Android Central. He leads the site's coverage of Chinese phone brands, contributing to reviews, features, and buying guides. He also writes about storage servers, audio products, and the semiconductor industry. Contact him on Twitter at @chunkynerd.