Should companies other than Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Samsung (KRX:005935) give up the good fight to grab a decent share of the smartphone market?
A new report from a mobile-phone market analyst shows smartphone manufacturers such as Nokia (NYSE:NOK), HTC (TPE:2498), LG (KRX:066570) and Sony (NYSE:SNE) made very little money selling smartphones over the last six years, while Apple and Samsung collectively accounted for nearly 88 percent of all profits earned in the smartphone market in that period.
According to Horace Dediu of Asymco, the smartphone industry generated $215 billion in net-operating profits over the last six years, of which nearly $189 billion went to Apple and Samsung. And, among the two market leaders, Apple was the dominant player taking away $133 billion, or nearly 62 percent, of total profits. Samsung trailed behind with $56.11 billion, or 26.1 percent, while the remaining $26 billion were split between Nokia, BlackBerry, HTC and LG.
Dediu said that profits for Nokia, which struggled to come to terms with the smartphone revolution until recently, accounted for nearly $20.5 billion, granting the company third place among smartphone manufacturers. HTC was at fourth place with 2.8 percent of total industry earnings, followed by BlackBerry (1.9 percent) and LG (1.2 percent). According to Dediu, Sony barely registered any earnings since 2007, while Motorola fared the worst and was unable to break even over the six-year period analyzed by the study.
Dediu also observed that about one billion smartphones were shipped in 2013, up from 683 million in 2012. In contrast, non-smartphone shipments continue to decline, with shipments of about 800 million last year, down from 987 million in 2012.
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Check out the tweet that highlights the study's findings.
$215b: Net phone operating profits earned last 6 yrs. Moto: -2.8% Sony: 0 LG: 1.2 HTC: 2.8 RIM: 1.9 Nokia: 9.5 Samsung: 26.1 Apple: 61.8
— Horace Dediu (@asymco) March 18, 2014