iPhone 11 has no 5G but tops other smartphones by a mile

Apple's iPhone 11, without 5G, far outdistanced other smartphones in the first quarter. Omdia says its dual camera attracted buyers, but the price was also $50 lower than the XR from a year earlier. (Apple)

The iPhone 11 was the world’s most-popular smartphone by far in the first quarter of 2020 with 19.5 million units shipped to retailers, according to a tally by analyst firm Omdia. 

And it doesn’t even include 5G.

Even with COVID-19 hurting most electronics sales, the iPhone 11 far outdid the previous leading iPhone XR, which shipped 13.6 million units in first quarter 2019.

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The Galaxy A51 finished second in the smartphone rankings, but far behind, with 6.8 million units shipped in the first quarter.

Despite a $50 lower price than the iPhone XR, the iPhone 11 features a dual camera, a major upgrade.  Omdia said this enhancement was extremely appealing to consumers, helping drive the increase in interest.  It did exceptionally well without even including 5G capability as well.  The iPhone 11, introduced last September, retails for $699 and the iPhone XR had a starting price of $749.

The phone also includes the A13 chip with four CPU cores, the same found in the higher end iPhone 11 Pro model.

RELATED: Apple’s three new iPhones: no 5G but a powerful new A13 chip

Apple iPhones have always taken first or second rank in the past five years.  “Apple’s success is the result of its strategy to offer relatively few models [and] focus its efforts on a small number of products that appeal to a broad selection of consumers and sell in extremely high volumes,” said Jusy Hong, Omdia analyst.  All of Apple’s four iPhones made it in the top 10, with the iPhone 11, iPhone XR, iPhone 11 Pro Max and iPhone 11 Pro ranked first, fifth, sixth and eighth, respectively.

Omdia said the biggest surprise in the first quarter was the success of two Xiaomi smartphones, which finished third and fourth.  The Redmi Note 8 and Redmi Note 8 Pro smartphones finished the quarter with 6.6 million and 6.1 million units shipped in the quarter.

Samsung also had four models in the top 10, but the only flagship device in that group was the Galaxy S20+ 5G. It took the top spot globally among 5G smartphones shipped globally in the first quarter with 3.5 million units shipped.  The other top 5G smartphones were the Huawei Mat 30 5G with 2.9 million units shipped; the Mate 30 Pro 5g with 2.7 million units shipped; the Galaxy S20 5G with 2.4 million and the Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G with 2.3 million.

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