Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. (SSNLF) and Inc. (AMZN) are the surprise winners this holiday season. 

According to a post by Yahoo Inc. (YHOO)-owned Flurry analytics, both companies increased their share of new device activations, a measure of electronic hardware sales. Samsung was responsible for 21% of all new phone and tablet activations, up from 19.8% during the same time last year. Amazon, which sells Fire tablets, made its entry into the list with a 2% share of all device activations. In the meanwhile, Apple Inc. (AAPL) saw its percentage share of activations decline by 5.1% to 44%. Thus, a Samsung device was activated for every two Apple devices. LG Electronics Inc. and Huawei rounded out the top five. 

An Increase Despite Brand Problems 

Samsung’s increased share of device activations is especially surprising in light of a recent controversy relating to exploding Galaxy Note 7 phones manufactured by the company. Analysts had expected the controversy to significantly affect the company’s brand and revenues. 

In an October Bloomberg report, Chung Chang Won, an analyst at Nomura Holdings Inc. estimated that the recall could cost the company as much as $5 billion in profits. Brand analysts quoted in the same report said Samsung, which has yet to detail a cause for the explosions, needed to come clean and communicate with customers. Evidently, the company’s efforts to effect a complete recall of the Galaxy Note 7 phones have convinced customers about its sincerity and they seem to have restored faith in its brand. 

Bad News for Apple and Alphabet 

The latest figures from Flurry are bad news for Apple and Alphabet Inc. subsidiary Google (GOOG). Apple released new editions of its blockbuster iPhone and Apple Watch series in September. The Cupertino company has already suffered from malware problems on its devices this year and a lackluster response to its new set of products could further depress investor sentiment regarding the company. (For more, see also: This Malware Video Will Crash Your Phone.)

On the other hand, Google entered the smartphone market this October with Pixel phones that resembled Apple’s products in pricing and design. Reviewers have high marks for the company for its initial foray into hardware. But authors of Flurry’s blogpost wrote that the device “failed to drum up excitement.” (For more, see also: Reviews Are in for Google's Pixel Phones.)   

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