Apple reportedly once again top US smartphone vendor, increases lead over Samsung

Apple was the top smartphone vender in the United States between December and February according to the latest comScore report. Apple captured 38.9% of a smartphone market of 133.7 million people, up 3.9% from the last measurement period. Samsung grew from 20.3% to 21.3%, with HTC, Motorola, and LG experiencing drop-offs.

Overall operating system market share in the U.S. still shows that Google’s Android is still dominant. However, Android’s market share dropped from 53.7% to 51.7%. Blackberry also fell from 7.3% to 5.4%. Both of these drops fed Apple’s growth. Microsoft had a very slight increase from 3% to 3.2%.

This report, if accurate, demonstrates that despite what many on Wall Street might say, Apple continues to grow steadily. They exceeded the growth shown in last month’s comScore report, while Samsung’s growth actually slowed. Of course, the U.S. is just one market, but it’s a very important market. Samsung might have an advantage in the rest of the world, selling cheap phones in countries where Apple doesn’t do business, but depending on the veracity of certain rumors, that’s not an advantage that Samsung will enjoy for too much longer.

Source: comScore

Joseph Keller is the former Editor in Chief of iMore. An Apple user for almost 20 years, he spends his time learning the ins and outs of iOS and macOS, always finding ways of getting the most out of his iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and Mac.

  • How can this be when everyone (aka fanboys of other platforms) keeps saying Apple is doomed? :)
  • There's been conflicting reports.
  • I don't know who to believe in. Such conflicting reports.
  • edit: some reason links are broken Just do a google search on venturebeat, bgr, or cnet iOS and you'll probably see them.
  • Those links are broken.
  • You can't believe everything you hear. These sites will write anything to get a headline story.
  • "How can this be when everyone (aka fanboys of other platforms) keeps saying Apple is doomed?" Well, the comScore data shows that more people bought iPhones recently (since the iPhone 5 was released) than in the previous quarter (when people who wanted iPhones were holding off to buy the iPhone 5). So, the comScore data should surprise no one that iPhone sales went up from Fall to the Winter quarter. But, the Tech Crunch article that Liquid Theory linked to shows the comparison between this year's first quarter and LAST YEAR's first quarter (right after the iPhone 4s was released). That data shows that less people (percentage-wise) bought the iPhone 5 over the Winter quarter than bought the iPhone 4s over last year's Winter quarter. So when you compare Apples to Apples (so to speak ;), Apple's popularity is going down. Not to mention that, in overall subscriber numbers, Android has over 50% of the U.S. smartphone market and Apple has less than 40%. If you've been around smartphones for a while, you may remember that not TOO long ago, Apple had a large percentage of U.S. smartphone subscribers and Android had ZERO. Maybe that's why "everyone" is saying Apple is going down? Because their numbers are getting smaller?
  • Absolutely untrue. Apple has never had a majority in the U.S. smartphone market, in fact, they are right now higher than ever before. Android didn't take a damn thing away from Apple, together they raced to kill Blackberry, WinMo, Palm, and Symbian. Now they've monopolized the market and Apple continues to grow. So no, absolutely no numbers are getting smaller, do some research next time.
  • Maybe you should actually do some research. Like, starting with the article that was linked to, above, and that I referenced. The Apple Q1 numbers from last year were bigger than Q1 from this year. That means "numbers are getting smaller." Furthermore, I never said Apple had a majority in the U.S. smartphone market. I said they had SOME of the U.S. market when Android had NONE. Now, Android has more than Apple. In other words, Android started way behind Apple and has surpassed Apple (in U.S. smartphone marketshare) - and is rapidly leaving Apple in its dust.
  • Because fanboyism, Apple or otherwise, requires faith.
    And faith is blind.
    Just ask any bible-thumper you happen to see.
  • People have stopped buying S3 and waiting for S4. Simple as that. I would like that it is because Apple is still hot, I think it's still hot!!
  • Na I don't think so my friend. The Galaxy S 4 was only accounted and even thought to have been announced about a month ago. That wouldn't make a huge dent in the markings. If it did then it would have also slowed apples growth as rumors of the 5s has been around since December. Apple is still the high market leader and they don't even compete in the low end like all the other OEMs do.
  • During that quarter the S4 event was announced. Everyone is used to Apple's annual update cycle so we are likely 6 months (now less) from a new phone so worth buying the iPhone 5. The same slowdown was seen the month or two before the iPhone was official.
  • I agree with the notion that the recent lead increase over Samsung might just be that the GS3 is a nearly year old device and people holding off for the GS4. That definitely shouldn't take away from the fact that Apple still has the ability to make headway in the U.S market, but we should put things in perspective here
  • What I want to know is what Apple has planned for the next iPhone. So I know if I should buy the 5 or wait for the new hotness.
  • Have you been asleep for the past few months. It should look the same, have a better camera, and probably processor speed increase and launch could be as early as June but probably be August.
  • Well, once again apple wins, like always, i mean is obvious, almost every single person have an Iphone that use everyday
  • Winning at what? Do you remember the Super Bowl from a couple of months ago? There was a quarter where the 49'ers did outscore the Ravens. But, the Ravens still won. Did you know that Android has over 50% of the U.S. smartphone subscribers? Apple has less than 40%. In other words, for every 4 people you see in the U.S. that have iPhones, there are OVER 5 people that have Android phones.
  • So? Apple is bigger than any other manufacturer, they are winning. Deal with it.
  • Please define "bigger" as it was used in that sentence, specifically.
  • No, Apple has more marketshare than Samsung - in the U.S.. Worldwide, Samsung is still selling more smartphones than Apple. Sounds like Samsung is winning, to me. Deal with it.
  • Android is not bad OS but nothing can beat in iTunes and synchronize all your devices
  • I use iTunes on my PC and use an Android app to sync everything to my Android devices. It runs over WiFi and syncs on a schedule. And the syncing works way better (more reliably) than WiFi syncing from iTunes to my iPod Touch.
  • iTunes is actually one of the primary reasons I ditched Apple. It's horrendous.
  • I am extremely happy with Apple. yes i don't need to upgrade still and no I don't need to get the latest apple phone.....but when I feel comfortable to get one, then I will. Apple isn't going anywhere and I cannot see myself getting anything but an Apple phone.....Apple fans are pretty much content with their phones...and I see more iphones than ever now. I felt like saying Apple phone just because an Apple a day.... ;-) Ok im out.
  • Let's all argue about crap that doesn't matter. If you like your phone, good! Its not going anywhere, be it apple or android.
  • Most intelligent comment submitted so far.
  • If this was an android site, the headline would be "android tops apple and co for OS" ..
  • This doesn't surprise me! You can't believe everything you read on these blogs.
  • These comments make me laugh. Android fanboys glorifying their numbers because they have 50% market well listen by the 1st quarter of next year it will drop to 30% after Apple releases iPhone 5S people will wish they didn't buy S4 and also don't forget the low cost iPhone which will demolish Android market share. Most people but Android smart phones bc they are cheaper and often free. The regular consumer is confused by the Android OS and will be buying more iPhones this year. Don't forget the new iRadio service will push people towards Apple. Get ready Android fanboys your reign is over.
  • Price is everything and the iPhone is fairly expensive for what it is, so Android is going to keep growing because there are phones released that are much cheaper. Ya, you could get a iphone 4 now for free, but the specs don't compare to many free Android devices out there. Also, people say that Android is so hard to use, but really, it's not. I have an iPhone now, had a Moto Razr before and while I'm loving how consistent the iPhone is, the Android device had a lot of things that I miss, namely, a back button. Lol. Both Android and Apple will be here for a long time. Both fit certain niches. I'm always going to have both. But you as an Apple fanboy make me laugh because you think that Android will drop to 30%, when was the last time Android dropped? Or even when was it around 30%? It's been a while. Apple and Android will continue to dominate the smartphone market and compete for shares over the other OSs.
  • Don't you get it, specs mean nothing when it comes to the iPhone. When a fandroid starts sporting out specks I stop listening. Apple make a superior OS that doesn't need 4 cores and project butter crap to make it work well. That fact that android does means it is a crap OS.
  • What, in your opinion, makes iOS "superior"?
  • "by the 1st quarter of next year it will drop to 30% after Apple releases iPhone 5S " Yeah, that's it! Apple used to have way more market share than Android and now they have way less. But, that's all going to COMPLETELY change in the next 12 months! Yeah!! For sure!!!
  • Apple may blow everyones' minds and add yet another row of icons... so, he might be right? /s
  • Why are there so many android fanboys on here defending their phones. I think it's because they are insecure and need to put apple down to feel good. Get a life fandroids.
  • The only Android phone users who actually care about commenting online (pro-Android or anti-Apple) are the few, the proud, the dying breed, the geeks. Not the geek-wannabes who sort of have an affinity for "tech and stuff." The true technology-for-technology's-sake-believers who are still stuck in the 20th century. And why are they a dying breed? Because technology is more accessible than ever now. You're not "special" because you know how to use a smartphone. Everybody does, thanks to Apple. Yes, Apple. Without iPhone, Android phones (and BlackBerry and Palm and Windows CE phones) would still be fiddly and difficult and would still require a geek. Because you'd need to RTFM to use the phones. And only geeks do that. That particular form of geek cred is gone forever. Nobody cares if you can root your damn HTC One. It won't impress anyone. Your non-geek friends shake their heads and say "Man, you need to get a life. Or something. But first, get an iPhone so we can all iMessage you for free." And that angers true geeks. Some of them are old enough to remember when smartphone-geekiness impressed people. The younger ones may have seen "Revenge of the Nerds." All of them pine for the days when they had that magical aura. That "Geek Cred." So they buy Android phones just to re-live those glory days. And they root their Samsungs because they can. And to try to impress each other. Good luck with that.
  • Translated: Thanks to Apple, even simpletons, the elderly, and pre-teen children can use a "smartphone" now without an intelligent geek holding their hand. Got it. Personally, I think it's more a case of Apple creating a dumbed-down OS that is the technological equivalent of encasing everyone in bubble-wrap to prevent them from hurting themselves, or "installing" a cork on the end of every fork to keep the neanderthal masses from poking their own eyes out. "Apple iOS... the cork-on-your-fork of mobile operating systems!" :P
  • "Samsung might have an advantage in the rest of the world, selling cheap phones in countries where Apple doesn’t do business, but..." Samsung also does exceptionally well selling expensive phones in other countries that Apple does do business; but hey, don't let that fact get in the way of your not-so-subtle Samsung bashing...