Canalys, IT market research agency, suggests that the $2.9 billion acquisition of Motorola phone business from Google will benefit Lenovo in multiple ways.
Lenovo’s recent Motorola deal will increase competition. The acquisition will bring challenges, but Lenovo’s management credibility and global brand recognition give it a head start.
A strengthened Lenovo will affect all the other Android partners. Asus, LG and Samsung have enjoyed high-profile partnerships with Google for the supply of its Nexus phones and tablets.
Nexus supply will now presumably pass to Lenovo, which also gains an immediate entry into the US, Motorola’s major market, as well as key markets in Western Europe and Latin America, according to Palo Alto-based Canalys VP and Principal Analyst, Chris Jones.
Lenovo, Motorola and Google combined accounted for 6 percent of worldwide Q4 smart phone shipments.
Lenovo must continue with Motorola’s speed-of-update strategy and ensure it can create pull for its smart phones through the carrier channel in mature markets when up against the might of Apple and Samsung.
“We expect Lenovo to double its worldwide smart phone market share within two years and achieve double-digit market share by 2015 at the latest,” Jones said.
Meanwhile, Canalys said smart phone shipments reached 998 million in 2013, a 44 percent increase on 2012.
Android’s dominance grew with the platform running on 79 percent (785 million) of the devices shipped in 2013, up from 68 percent in 2012.
Apple’s iOS share fell from 20 percent to 15 percent, despite shipments increasing to 154 million.
Microsoft saw a percentage point share rise to 3 percent as shipments increased 90 percent in 2013 to 32.1 million, driven by Nokia’s Lumia devices, and putting it ahead of BlackBerry, at 19.8 million.
Samsung also performed strongly in 2013 and strengthened its position as the world’s leading smart phone vendor. Its market share jumped from 30 percent in 2012 to 32 percent in 2013.
With Apple in second place, Huawei edged past Lenovo to claim third place, albeit by fewer than 5 million units.
Apple gained market share in Q4, rising from 13 percent to 17 percent sequentially, chiefly at Samsung’s expense.
Samsung itself achieved a market share that was flat on Q4 a year ago at 29 percent, but down from 34 percent sequentially.
Huawei held third place in Q4, as it did in Q3, which helped it take third place for the full year too.