Analysts noted a trend toward lower-priced Android handsets in the opening quarter, suggesting purchasing decisions were impacted by the Covid-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, with Samsung and Xiaomi taking the lion’s share of shipments.

Figures released separately by Strategy Analytics and Canalys showed smartphones priced at less than $400 dominated Android shipments during the period, with Samsung’s Galaxy S20+ the only premium-tier model appearing in respective top-six listings.

Both companies placed Samsung as the dominant Android smartphone vendor, with its models accounting for four out of their respective top-six rankings.

In both cases, Xiaomi was the only other Android manufacturer to make those charts.

Strategy Analytics placed Samsung’s Galaxy A51 at the top of the tables, with 6 million units shipped and a 2.3 per cent market share. Canalys, though, put Xiaomi’s Redmi Note 8 and 8T at the head, with sell-in of more than 8 million units.

Both tables featured Samsung’s Galaxy A10 and A20, highlighting the continued importance of this range to the South Korean vendor.

Juha Winter, associate director at Strategy Analytics, explained the Q1 shipment numbers highlighted “many consumers want value-for-money devices with good-enough specs at affordable prices”, adding the Android smartphone market was “entering a post-premium era”.

He noted consumers had become “increasingly price-sensitive” due to reductions in operator handset subsidies and recessions being sparked in many countries by Covid-19.

Recent numbers from Strategy Analytics and IDC laid bare the impact the virus had on the overall smartphone market during Q1, with shipments recording their largest-ever decline due to the outbreak.