Chinese smartphone maker Huawei has continues to show strong growth in the European smartphone market, with concerns about the firm's activities in other areas clearly not putting off buyers.

New research from International Data Corporation (IDC) revealed that in the final quarter of 2018, the brand continued to close the gap on market leader Samsung in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region, accounting for more than one in five phones sold over the three-month period.

It revealed Huawei achieved a market share of 21.2 per cent in the quarter, shipping almost 21 million handsets. This was up from a share of just 12.2 per cent for the same three-month period in 2017, amounting to year-on-year growth of 73.76 per cent.

This has seen the company overtake Apple for second place in the region, with the US brand seeing its market share fall from 19.6 per cent in Q4 2017 to 16.6 per cent just 12 months later.

Marta Pinto, research manager at IDC EMEA, commented that all eyes in the industry have been on Huawei and Apple, particularly following the latter's recent profit warning.

She noted that Apple had a "reasonable" quarter, but Huawei has shown hugely impressive growth, and now has a solid foothold in all major markets in Europe.

Ms Pinto said the Chiense brand is "leveraging that presence in a head-to-head battle with Samsung, driven by a lot of marketing and the strength of its product portfolio. Such a rapid change is rare in this region among the top players in the market".

Another factor in Huawei's rise to prominence is the success of its Honor sub-brand. While this remains part of Huawei, it is run very independently, with the two brands competing with each other in some areas.

"More Honor phones are sold in retail chains than by the operator shops in comparison with the Huawei brand, and Honor in general has lower price points. The two together allow Huawei to play more points on the market," Ms Pinto continued.

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