Strong Demand for MacBook Pro Increases Apple’s Notebook Market Share in Last Quarter

Apple continued to see strong worldwide sales across its MacBook line-up in the third quarter of 2017, according to new market research conducted by TrendForce. Apple's laptop sales once again exceeded ASUS to rank fourth in global notebook shipments, which overall saw a "remarkable" quarterly increase of 6.8 percent and a year-on-year increase of 0.9 percent, reaching 42.69 million units.

Apple continued the strong shipments of 12-inch products in the second quarter, and focused on the new models of MacBook Pro in the third quarter, recording the third quarter shipments of 4.43 million units and an increase of 11.3%. It exceeded ASUS to rank the fourth in this third quarter.
HP recorded a new high in its quarterly shipments, which increased by 17.6 percent, reaching a single-season shipment of 11 million units for the first time. HP is expected to achieve the annual goal of 40 million units, which will secure its first place in 2017 global notebook shipments ranking.

Lenovo recovered somewhat from a poor first half of the year, recording 8.58 million units for third quarter shipments and a 6.5 percent quarterly growth. In the fourth quarter, it is estimated to have another 1 to 3 percent growth.

Dell shipped 665 million units in the third quarter with a quarter-on-quarter increase of 1.4 percent, maintaining its third place in the rankings. ASUS and Acer ranked fifth and sixth, shipping 3.82 million and 3.31 million units respectively.


During a recent earnings call, CEO Tim Cook revealed that Apple's Mac division set a new all-time revenue record of $25.8 billion for fiscal 2017. Apple sold 5.4 million Macs during the September quarter, up 10 percent over last year, and gained significant market share as the global market contracted by one percent, according to IDC's latest estimate. The performance was reportedly fueled by big demand for the MacBook Pro, said Cook, and Mac revenue grew 25 percent to a new September quarter record.

"We had outstanding results all around the world in each of our geographic segments, growing Mac revenue by 20 percent or more," said Cook. "We were also very happy with the success of Mac in the education market, where customer purchases grew double digits year over year."

Related Roundup: MacBook Pro
Buyer's Guide: MacBook Pro (Neutral)

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iPhone X Should Push Apple Ahead of Samsung as World’s Largest Smartphone Maker

Apple will dethrone Samsung as the world's largest smartphone maker in the fourth quarter of 2017, on the strength of strong iPhone X demand, according to Taiwanese market research firm TrendForce.


TrendForce estimates Apple will record 19.1 percent market share in the quarter, encompassing the busy holiday shopping season, which would be slightly ahead of Samsung's estimated 18.2 percent market share. Chinese vendors Huawei, OPPO, and Xiaomi are expected to round off the top five.


The feat would be impressive as always given that Samsung sells over a dozen different smartphone models, including some as cheap as $200, whereas Apple primarily caters to the high-end market beyond the iPhone SE for $349.
Samsung is expected to slightly scale back the production of its high-end models in the fourth quarter as the brand is seeing the sales of its smartphones being squeezed by the strong demand for Apple's latest iPhone devices. TrendForce estimates that Samsung's fourth-quarter total volume will come to 77 million units, a 5% drop from the third quarter.
The fourth quarter has always been the strongest for Apple, given it launches new devices in the fall, allowing it to surpass Samsung in the year-ago quarter as well. Samsung's Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ were released back in April, so sales momentum is likely beginning to decline for those devices.

Meanwhile, market research firm Canalys estimates the iPhone 8 Plus outpaced the iPhone 8 last quarter with shipments of 6.3 million units and 5.4 million units respectively. Canalys said the iPhone 8 Plus is the first Plus-sized iPhone to out-ship its smaller 4.7-inch sibling in a single quarter.

Apple doesn't disclose iPhone sales on a model-by-model basis, but chief Tim Cook said the iPhone 8 Plus has "gotten off to the fastest start of any Plus model," which came as "a bit of a surprise" to the company.

As far as iPhone X sales are concerned, Apple's guidance of $84-$87 billion revenue for the holiday quarter suggests that demand for the device will be significant. Apple should easily beat its all-time record for revenue in a single quarter of $78.4 billion, achieved in the fourth quarter of 2016.

Related Roundup: iPhone X
Buyer's Guide: iPhone X (Buy Now)

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Apple’s Q2 2017 MacBook Sales Increase 17 Percent Over the Previous Quarter

Apple's notebook shipments totaled an estimated 3.98 million units in the second quarter of the 2017 calendar year, representing a quarter-on-quarter increase of 17.1 percent, according to new data published by market research firm TrendForce.

Apple gained ground on ASUS at fifth place in the second quarter ranking, with a 0.7 percent increase over the previous quarter to leave both companies taking a 10 percent share of the market. TrendForce highlighted Apple's decision to upgrade its 12-inch MacBook as one of the reasons behind the gains.

Apple trailed closely behind ASUS at fifth place in the second-quarter ranking. The updated 12-inch MacBook helped expand MacBook shipments by 17.1 percent from the first quarter to 3.98 million units. TrendForce also anticipates a double-digit sequential growth for third-quarter MacBook shipments as Apple will focus on the MacBook Pro series during the year’s second half.
Global notebook shipments in the second quarter of 2017 registered a sequential quarterly increase of 5.7 percent and a year-on-year increase of 3.6 percent, totaling 39.96 million units. Sales in the U.S. and the arrival of new product models were said to be the main driving forces behind the second quarter shipments, with strong demand in the entire first half of 2017 exceeding market expectations.

Tapping into back-to-school sales, HP's market share increased by 8.5 percent, allowing the company to retain first place in the global shipment ranking for the fifth consecutive quarter, while Dell posted the largest sequential increase of 21.3 percent to take third place in the ranking. Lenovo meanwhile shipped just 8.05 million units in the second quarter, representing a year-on-year drop of 2.4 percent, with slowdown in the notebook market in the Asia-Pacific region said to have had an impact on the brand's performance.


Acer's aggressive expansion in the Chromebook market did little to fend off rival models in the U.S., causing its notebook shipments to drop by 3.5 percent from the first quarter to 3.22 million units, with Acer remaining in sixth place in the global ranking.

TrendForce noted there are worries in the market that the strong shipment result for this year's first half reflects demand pulling ahead, so shipments in the second half might be comparatively weak. Despite that, third-quarter notebook shipments are projected to increase by another 3-5 percent versus the previous quarter.

Apple updated its 13-inch and 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro notebooks in June, introducing faster processors and improved GPUs just eight months after the machines were last refreshed. It also introduced a new low-price 13-inch MacBook Pro sans Touch Bar with a 128GB SSD. No other changes were made to the MacBook Pro.

According to KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple is working on a high-end 15-inch MacBook Pro model that will include 32GB RAM, with production on this machine to begin early in the fourth quarter of 2017. Kuo claimed the MacBook Pro will be "the most significantly redesigned product this year" with desktop-class RAM to appeal to high-end users.

Related Roundups: MacBook Pro, MacBook
Tag: TrendForce
Buyer's Guide: MacBook Pro (Buy Now), MacBook (Buy Now)

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Apple Sees Notebook Shipments Increase Year on Year in Q1 2017

Apple's notebook shipments totaled an estimated 3.4 million units in the first quarter of the 2017 calendar year, compared to an estimated 2.9 million in the previous quarter, according to new data published by market research firm TrendForce.

The figure represents a 15.8 percent decline against the last quarter of 2016, reflecting a somewhat similar decline for the overall notebook market over the same period, however the company's Q1 2017 numbers also indicate a year-on-year increase in overall MacBook shipments.


Apple shipped 3.4 million units of MacBook devices this first quarter and claimed fifth place in the ranking. The latest generation of MacBook Pro with Touch Bar, which was released in last year's fourth quarter, was well-received by consumers and contributed significantly to the overall MacBook shipments. As a result, first-quarter MacBook shipments, while representing a 15.8% decline versus the prior quarter, also showed a year-on-year increase of 15.4%.
HP, Lenovo, Dell, and Asus all suffered marginal market share declines compared to Q4 2016, but Apple's share stayed level over the last two quarters, enabling it to maintain fifth place in the shipment rankings. However sixth-placed Acer gained 0.8 percent ground on Apple over the same period, which TrendForce put down to expanded stocking of notebooks by channel distributors in anticipation of increased device production costs.


TrendForce estimates that MacBook shipments for the second quarter of 2017 will grow by more than 10 percent compared with the first quarter. The firm attributes this projection to suggestions that Apple will update its 12-inch MacBook with a new processor and the possibility of promotional pricing for some older models.

Recent rumors suggest Apple could be planning to announce refreshes for both the MacBook and MacBook Pro at June's Worldwide Developers Conference. The notebooks are expected to be updated with faster Kaby Lake processors, an update from the Skylake processors in the current machines. Apple is also said to be considering updating the MacBook Air with new internals, as sales of Apple's most affordable notebook have remained surprisingly strong.


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Samsung Reclaims Title of World’s Largest Smartphone Maker As It Recovers From Galaxy Note7

Samsung topped Apple as the world's largest smartphone maker in the first quarter, as it continues to show signs of recovery following its disastrous Galaxy Note7 recall last year, according to Taiwanese research firm TrendForce.


Samsung reclaimed the number one spot with an estimated 26.1 percent market share, trailed by Apple at an estimated 16.9 percent, said TrendForce. Chinese vendor Huawei, which aims to become the world's largest smartphone maker within four years, finished third with an estimated 11.4 percent market share.


Samsung is traditionally the world's largest smartphone maker, as it sells millions of inexpensive smartphones alongside its flagship devices, so this would normally be no surprise. However, after Samsung recalled the Galaxy Note7 due to defective batteries, Apple overtook its South Korean rival in the fourth quarter.

While the worst might be over for Samsung now, TrendForce said the company's sales results for its high-end smartphones still "fell short of expectations" in the first quarter, as consumer confidence in the brand had "yet to fully recover" from Galaxy Note7 recall and subsequent discontinuation in the fall.

Nevertheless, Samsung's continued success in the mid-range and low-end segments of the market allowed it to reclaim its crown.
The economically priced, high-performing Galaxy J series sustained Samsung’s shipments and contributed significantly to the expansion of the brand’s overall smartphone production volume. Samsung was the only brand that saw positive growth in production volume during the off season of the first quarter.
Samsung's focus has now shifted towards the Galaxy S8, set to launch later this month. The smartphone features an edge-to-edge 5.8-inch display with no physical home button, foreshadowing the rumored design of the tentatively named iPhone 8. And it shouldn't catch on fire like the Galaxy Note7, as Samsung now performs an 8-point battery check on all of its smartphones.

It's important to recognize that these are estimated figures only, and that shipments do not necessarily reflect sales to customers.

Apple will officially report its iPhone sales figures for the first quarter, corresponding with the second quarter of its 2017 fiscal year, on May 2.


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iPhone 8 Said to Have 3GB of RAM and 64GB/256GB Storage Options

The widely rumored 5.8-inch iPhone with an edge-to-edge OLED display will match the iPhone 7 Plus with 3GB of RAM and come in two storage options, 64GB and 256GB, according to Chinese research firm TrendForce.


The report, which outlines several already-rumored features, said the so-called "iPhone 8" will not have a fully curved display due to production and drop test issues with 3D glass. Instead, the high-end device will adopt the same slightly curved 2.5D cover glass used since the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus in 2014.

TrendForce said Apple will remove the Home button on the iPhone, as widely rumored, and integrate the related functions into the display. If that fact is accurate, it suggests rumored 3D facial recognition capabilities could supplement rather than fully replace Touch ID, which could be embedded into the display.

TrendForce itself expects the "iPhone 8" to incorporate 3D sensing technology that can be used for facial recognition and augmented reality features.

The research note said the 5.8-inch iPhone will be accompanied by updated 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch models with LCD displays. The 5.5-inch model will allegedly have the same 3GB of RAM as the iPhone 7 Plus, while the 4.7-inch model is said to have 2GB of RAM. Both models are expected to include up to 256GB of storage.

Rumors are generally shaping up to suggest the 5.8-inch iPhone with an OLED display will be a significant upgrade, but the model could cost upwards of $1,000 in the United States. Meanwhile, the 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch models are expected to be iterative but less expensive upgrades to the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.

Last year, TrendForce accurately predicted the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus would be available in 32GB, 128GB, and 256GB storage capacities.

Related Roundup: iPhone 8 (2017)
Tag: TrendForce

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