Today Samsung announced that it sold nearly 6.7 million 5G smartphones in 2019 between the Galaxy S10 5G and the Galaxy Note 10 Plus 5G, marking better than expected sales for 5G devices that support the next-generation mobile standards.
While you’re thinking that 6.7 million devices don’t sound like a lot in the giant smartphone market, but it’s still better than expected — at IFA 2019, Samsung had only sold 2 million 5G devices and expected to sell 4 million total by the end of the year. This number also makes up a considerable amount of the fledging 5G market, with Samsung claiming its devices count for 53.9% of the global 5G smartphone market.
2020 is expected to be an interesting year for 5G growth across the smartphone market. Unlike 2019’s phones, which largely didn’t include 5G, Qualcomm’s flagship Snapdragon 865 processor will make support for the next-generation network mandatory across any Android flagships that offer it — albeit through a separate antenna rather than a fully integrated solution. Increased 5G rollouts by carriers mean that customers will presumably be more interested in actually buying 5G devices, too.
This simply means that instead of having to offer a separate 5G model of the S11 or Note 11 (or whatever Samsung calls it’s new flagship successors), every S11 or Note 11 model will support 5G, which will likely boost sales, and of course, the added ease in supporting 5G will likely mean plenty of new competitors for Samsung in 2020 too — including rumors of a 5G iPhone — which means that the market share breakdown could look very different at this time next year.