Xiaomi might not mean much to people in the U.S., but in China it’s now the top-selling smartphone brand. According to market research company, Canalys, Xiaomi sold 15 million smartphones in China in the second quarter. That’s triple the sales it saw a year earlier.
This huge boost saw Xiaomi surpass Samsung and local brands including Lenovo and Huawei.
How did Samsung perform in China? Smartphone sales fell to 13.2 million units in the second quarter, down from 15.5 million a year earlier. Lenovo sales came in at around 11 million units.
While Xiaomi’s presence in the west is nonexistent, it’s strong showing in China propelled it to a top 5 spot among smartphone makers across the globe according to Strategy Analytics. The Chinese based smartphone maker shot past LG Electronics for the fifth spot after being nowhere on the map last year.
Xiaomi’s surge into the top five shouldn’t surprise anyone. China is the largest smartphone market with Canalys saying nearly four in every 10 phones are sold in the country.
Xiaomi’s rise comes as the company prices its smartphones competitively and focuses on its own software called MIUI.
Unsurprisingly, Chinese brands dominate the smartphone market in China. The only foreign smartphone makers making a dent in the world’s most populous country is Samsung and Apple.
Samsung’s struggles in China are partly its own. Samsung failed to transition to newer phones as Chinese consumers geared up for faster smartphones on 4G networks. Many of its phones on store shelves were third-generation while consumers were looking for newer ones.
These struggles and Xiaomi’s surge led to Samsung posting its lowest quarterly profit in two years in the second quarter. Net profit dipped 20% compared to a year earlier.