Anybody who owns an iPhone knows that the iPhone and the Samsung Galaxy are considered to be the two most popular cell phones. Each generation of the iPhone has its Galaxy counterpart, more or less, considering that Samsung has released more models of the Galaxy over the past 10 years.
When deciding whether is Samsung or iPhone more popular, there are several things that should be taken into consideration, primarily are we talking globally, or just the US, and the second is do we take the number of sold phones as an ultimate testament of the phone's popularity.
The Samsung global market share is larger
At the end of the year 2018, the Samsung global marker share was almost 22%, compared to the iPhone's market share which was slightly above 15%. So, if we're talking share volume, i.e. sold items, then the answer to our original question is Samsung or iPhone more popular would be undisputable – Samsung. The percentages translate roughly to 310 million Samsung phones sold all over the world, as opposed to 215 million units of Apple's iPhone.
However, there is another factor here that one must take into consideration when discussing sales of iPhones and Samsung phones. Apple only produces the iPhone, whereas Samsung produces a plethora of phones, including both high end phones like the Galaxy which are the iPhone's competition as well as cheaper devices. It can be said that in developed countries, where the purchasing parity is higher the iPhone is more popular, whereas elsewhere the Samsung performs better because it sells cheaper and more affordable phones.
Apple put a lot of effort into building a brand
On the other hand, if we are discussing the US alone, the iPhone is a brand. Apple has always been considered a large and powerful tech company in the states and they spend a lot of time, effort and money into marketing the iPhone as the premier and the best phone in the world. Steven Jobs used to say that the iPhone isn't a phone, and his original idea was to develop a fully functional tool, a small computer if you will.
You can be the biggest Android and respectively the biggest Samsung fan in the world, you would have to admit that the job that Jobs and the team at Apple did was revolutionary. The concept of smartphone and smartphones in general wouldn't have been what they are today without the iPhone. That's another thing that has to be considered when discussing is Samsung or iPhone more popular.
Apple dominates the US market
Let's then look at the US market. Statistics show that 45% of all smartphones that are currently in use in the country are iPhones, not counting the millions of iPhones that are not in use, i.e. the old phones. That is clear evidence that the iPhone is more popular in the US. Most of the remaining phones are Androids, but bear in mind that the Android company includes a range of other phones, not just the Samsung.
If we compare the iPhone and Samsung against each other, the market share in the fourth quarter of 2019, it was 49% against 20% in favor of the iPhone.