Soon after technology giant Apple reported its first-ever quarterly drop in iPhone sales in April, a new report has found that "the outlook for iPhone demand keeps getting murkier" as other leading smartphone brands like Samsung make inroads in the market.
The number of iPhone units sold would tumble 12 per cent from 2015 and the upcoming iPhone 7 would be "a marginal cycle at best", New York Post reported, quoting a Wall Street analyst on Friday.
Recently, retail data insights and consulting business Kantar Retail reported that Samsung's Galaxy 7 line of smartphones grabbed 16 per cent of total sales in the US during the three months ended May 31, exceeding the 14.6 per cent of sales for the iPhone 6s.
As the momentum of the 6s has slowed down, investors are worried about iPhone 7 that the device might not be a significant upgrade.
Mark Moskowitz of Barclays forecast that this year's iPhone unit sales would total 203.7 million down from 231.5 million last year.
The report by Kantar not only mentioned the threat to Apple but to its biggest rival Samsung as well by the increasing competition from lower-priced rivals, most notably China-based Xiaomi and Huawei.
"Apple and Samsung should stop worrying so much about each other and take a look around them," Kantar analyst Lauren Guenveur was quoted as saying, noting that Huawei aims to overtake Apple as the second-largest smartphone seller by 2020.
Guenveur also noted that "rumours are swirling" that Google will soon introduce a handset of its own.
Earlier this week, research firm IDC said Apple's share of the worldwide PC market shrank to 7.1 per cent from 7.4 per cent as customers hold out for a long-awaited refresh to the MacBook Pro line.
Apple is slated to give an update on recent demand when it reports results on July 26.