Apple was the top smartphone seller in the final quarter of last year, seizing the crown from Samsung.
Apple shipped an estimated 73.8 million iPhones during the fourth quarter.
It driven by the popularity of its newest models in the US and Europe and lower-priced handsets in other parts of the world.
Apple, which has been below Samsung for some time, “is recovering, due to cheaper iPhone 11 pricing and healthier demand in Asia and North America,” said Neil Mawston of Strategy Analytics.
Strategy Analytics’ separate survey also showed Apple on top in the past quarter.
Electronics giant Samsung delivered some 69.4 million handsets as it slipped to the number two position.
Chinese smartphone powerhouse Huawei remained a strong player in its home market.
But, it saw sales of premium models take a hit in Western Europe in the wake of US sanctions.
According to reports, Huawei shipped 56.2 million smartphones during the quarter.
It declined about seven percent from the same period a year earlier.
IHS Markit senior analyst Anna Ahrens said Huawei faces headwinds because of US sanctions which have prevented it from getting key components and software.
“In markets like Western Europe, the lack of Google services will make Huawei phones a hard sell for consumers, especially considering that the company´s Mate series positioned squarely in the premium price segment,” Ahrens said.
Samsung remained the top smartphone seller overall last year.
The broader market expects to get a boost as 5G telecom networks get established.
Earlier, Apple Inc dropped plans to let iPhone users fully encrypt backups of their devices in the company’s iCloud service.
It came under concern after the FBI complained that the move would harm investigations.
The reversal of Apple, has not previously been reported.