Lenovo Executive Predicts Significant Motorola Growth in Global Smartphone Market

What you should know

  • Motorola, once a leading player in the mobile phone market, has seen its global market share decline from 17% to 4%, trailing significantly behind Samsung and Apple.
  • Lenovo, Motorola’s parent company, has plans to more than double Motorola’s share of the worldwide smartphone market, aiming to take third place after Apple and Samsung.
  • To achieve this, Lenovo will focus on the premium segment of the smartphone market, which is currently dominated by Apple and Samsung. The current Razr+ foldable clamshell is Motorola’s attempt to break into this market.
  • In some markets, Motorola is already the second or third best-selling smartphone firm. However, to replace Xiaomi as the third largest global smartphone manufacturer, Motorola will need to focus on markets like India, which are crucial to its global performance.

Full Story

Motorola’s got some iconic phones under its belt. Remember the Razr V3? That baby, launched in 2004, was a best-seller, with over 130 million units flying off the shelves. Then there was the Motorola Droid, the phone that kicked off Androidmania. Released in November 2009, it was the first real iPhone challenger. Who could forget that “Droid” notification sound and the free turn-by-turn directions?

But, things didn’t always go so smoothly. After the Atrix (which had the first fingerprint scanner on a smartphone in the post-iPhone era) failed to take the smartphone market by storm, Motorola’s share of the handset market took a nosedive. It plummeted from 17% to 4% globally. Those stats put Motorola way behind Samsung and Apple, both of whom have worldwide shares above or close to 20%.

According to NBC 5-TV, Dallas-Ft.Worth, Lenovo (Motorola’s parent company) has a plan. They want to more than double Motorola’s share of the worldwide smartphone market and move it into third place after Apple and Samsung. IDC says the top three smartphone brands last year were Apple (20.1%), Samsung (19.4%), and Xiaomi (12.5%). To steal Xiaomi’s spot, Lenovo’s strategy is to focus on the premium slice of the smartphone market. That’s the segment that Apple and Samsung dominate.

Matthew Zielinski, president of international markets at Lenovo, says the current Razr+ foldable clamshell is Motorola’s “stab at the premium market.” But to move up from its current position as the eighth largest global smartphone manufacturer, Motorola’s got to take on high-end premium models like the Apple iPhone 15 Pro Max and the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra. Motorola showed it could take on the iPhone back in 2009, but the market’s changed a lot since then. Zielinski added that most Razr buyers converted to the clamshell from an iPhone.

In some markets, Motorola’s already hot on the heels of Apple and Samsung. In the U.S., for example, Motorola took advantage of ZTE’s status as a national security threat to replace the firm as the third best-selling smartphone firm. In Latin America, Motorola is number two, trailing Samsung but ahead of Apple. Zielinski says that in markets that can affect its overall global performance, Motorola’s aiming for a 10% share, growing “stably.”

One country Motorola needs to focus on is India. The country’s value-for-money ethos has made Xiaomi very popular there. Zielinski calls India “by far one of the most strategic countries” for Lenovo. He added, “We’re going to place as many bets as we can because we think the growth of the Indian population is fantastic, and they’re wonderful people.”

Zielinski believes that Motorola can move from number eight to number three in the worldwide smartphone market in just three years. “I would bet a paycheck that in three years we will be number three around the world,” he said.

Derrick Flynn
Derrick Flynnhttps://www.phonesinsights.com
With over four years of experience in tech journalism, Derrick has honed his skills and knowledge to become a vital part of the PhonesInsights team. His intuitive reviews and insightful commentary on the latest smartphones and wearable technology consistently provide our readers with valuable information.


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