iPhone 12 is Officially the World’s Best-Selling Smartphone in 2021

Nero Peña
Nero Peña

Updated · Sep 28, 2022


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The smartphone battle continues to dominate the tech race. And this year, we have a winner!

The iPhone 12 – Apple’s latest flagship product – is the current chart-topper on the list of the best-selling smartphones since January 2021. This is based on a Market Pulse report released on Friday by market research firm Counterpoint. 

According to the report, the iPhone 12 stood in first place among the “Global Top 10 Best-selling Models”. It shared the top spot with the rest of the units on the series, with the iPhone 12 Pro Max and iPhone 12 Pro taking the second and third places, respectively. 

The iPhone 12 Mini also made it to the list, but quite a few ranks away from its siblings. It settled on the eighth spot. Older models including the iPhone 11 and iPhone SE 2020 found themselves in the mid-ranks.

The report also revealed that the iPhone 12 series accounted for about 71% of Apple’s entire sales for the month. On a closer look, the United States took the largest consumer share - it comprised almost one-third of the total sales. 

That’s not much of a surprise, since the US average phone usage records around 5.4 hours of screen time on a daily basis. There are also 272.6 million smartphone users in America in 2021, which translates to a whopping 79.10% penetration rate. That puts the US way above other countries in terms of total smartphone usage. 

Among other units on the lineup, the iPhone 12 Pro Max found its way into the hands of most Americans. The report found that it’s the top-selling model in the US, mainly because buyers preferred the high-end version over the entry-level models. This explains why the iPhone 12 Mini didn’t land well - besides the fact that its smaller display and lower battery capacity failed to attract buyers.

In addition, Counterpoint said that strong carrier promotions and the demand for 5G connectivity were the key drivers behind the iPhone 12 series’ robust sales. With this, it is expected that Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) will be rolling out more 5G devices across various price segments.

Counterpoint Research Associate Monika Sharma said that “5G is slowly becoming a standard offering and as prices continue to come down, we will see more mid-tier 5G capable smartphones in the bestseller list in the coming months.”

The list is clearly dominated by Apple, but Android smartphones were able to secure their spots as well. Xiaomi's Redmi 9A and Redmi 9 successfully breached the Top 10, along with the Samsung Galaxy A21s and Galaxy A31.


Nero Peña

Nero Peña

Nero is an all-around wordsmith with a degree in Communication Arts— not the vicious emperor you might know in history books. He's an avid reader. A frisky writer. A tech enthusiast and occasional binge-watcher. He likes long walks on the beach. Enjoys deep thinking and shallow conversations. Hates ketchup. Panic! At The Disco.

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