'The larger vendors face a high degree of uncertainty over the current trade situation with the USA,' analyst Mo Jia said.
A new report from Counterpoint Research states that OnePlus beat Samsung to lead the premium smartphone market in India for the first time ever for a full quarter. The number of smartphones shipped in 2017 fell 0.3 per cent, according to IDC, the first decline after years of strong growth. In terms of year-on-year growth, HMD Global's Nokia (782%), Tecno (59%), Xiaomi (43%) and Huawei (41%) were the fastest growing vendors, while brands such as Lenovo, Gionee, Micromax and Sony registered highest drop in shipments during the June quarter, according to Counterpoint. Huawei had a 15% market share followed by Apple at 11%.
"The continued growth of Huawei is impressive, to say the least, as is its ability to move into markets where, until recently, the brand was largely unknown", said Ryan Reith, programme vice president of IDC's Worldwide Mobile Device Tracker.
To be sure, that's likely going to change in a quarter or two, at most, with Apple ramping up per the usual rhythms and seasonal ebb and flow of its iPhone sales cycle.
IHS Markit analyst Gerrit Schneemann said that Huawei had cleaned Apple's clock by shifting to more value-added models, and by launching new flagship smartphones with the latest features.
Huawei also shipped about 95.36 million smartphones in the first half of 2018, trailing only Samsung to serve as the second largest vendor worldwide with a 14.9% share, Sigmaintell estimated.
The weak smartphone demand is due to a slow-down in developed markets like China, US and Western Europe, where replacement cycles are lengthening.
OnePlus India general manager Vikas Agarwal said the brand had become the largest premium brand in India in little over three years.
"Huawei's strategy has evolved significantly over the last six months", Canalys analyst Mo Jia said in a statement.
Even Apple, which is usually immune to downward sales trends, saw shipments remain relatively flat in Q2 (its fiscal Q3), with iPhone sales increasing by just one percent year-over-year.