Global sales of smartphones declined the most in 2018, and the prospects for 2019 are not much better in the light of new market research.
According to IDC's research firm IDC, in 2018, world-wide mobile phone numbers fell by 4.1% to a total of 1.4 billion units.
"The global smartphone market is now a disaster," said Ryan Reith, IDC analyst.
"Outside a few fast-growing markets such as India, Indonesia, South Korea and Vietnam in 2018, we didn't see much positive action."
Reith said that the market has been affected by consumers waiting for longer to replace their phones, which is not satisfied with the cost of high premium devices and the political and economic uncertainty.
According to the IDC analysis, published on Wednesday, the Chinese market was particularly affected, accounting for about 30% of smartphone sales.
IDC said five smartphone manufacturers have become stronger and now account for 69% of global sales, compared with 63% a year ago.
Samsung was still the first phone maker with a market share of 20.8%, despite the fact that sales fell by eight percent during the year.
According to the investigation, Apple managed to recover its second position with a 14.9% market share before Huawei with 14.7%.
In the fourth quarter, IDC reported a decrease of 4.9% in smartphone sales, which is the fifth consecutive quarter.