The prosperous urban regions of China – where almost all the emerging middle class are to be found – is a key market for premium smartphone models, and the latest figures from Kantar Worldpanel suggest that local Android brands are taking market share from Apple.

The latest smartphone OS data from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech for the three months ending February 2016 shows that Android increased its sales share in urban China to 76.4% from 73% in the same period a year ago. In the US and EU5, Android continued to make year-on-year gains.

Apple saw the iPhone’s market share drop 3.2% in the same period.

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Kantar said that Android gains were due to both older and newer Chinese brands.

Huawei was able to recapture the top spot on the Smartphone brand leader board, capturing 24.4% of Smartphones sold in urban China, just ahead of Apple’s 22.2% […]

Up-and-coming local brands Meizu and Oppo both showed strong year-on-year growth, each capturing about 6% of smartphone sales.

Kantar does, though, believe that the iPhone SE may provide Android smartphones with increased competition, offering an appealing option for those Android owners who would prefer an iPhone but have been constrained by the high purchase cost.

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