By now, it’s no longer a secret that global smartphone demand has plateaued. However, market researchers seem to disagree on the specifics. Gartner says the smartphone market contracted by 0.4 percent in the third quarter of this year, while IDC thinks it actually grew by almost one percent year-over-year.
The usual markers of saturation were observed by all analysts, such as a shift away from owning the cheapest model and more towards flagships and mid-range, value-oriented phones. That means the biggest beneficiaries have been companies like Samsung and the ring of Chinese giants that includes Huawei, Xiaomi, Vivo, and Oppo.