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Samsung and Oppo dominate Southeast Asia

Conspicuously absent from the top five is Apple, whose iPhones are too expensive for most in the region.

Aloysius Low/CNET

When discussing emerging smartphone markets, a lot of the conversation turns towards Brazil, Russia, India and Africa. One market that often falls under the radar is Southeast Asia, comprised of 11 counties and over 600 million people -- nearly double the population of the United States.

Perhaps most importantly, Southeast Asia is growing. IDC recently released their phone sales figures for the region, reporting an 18.1 percent quarter-on-quarter increase and a year-on-year rise of 6.5 percent.

Leading the pack is Samsung with 20 percent of the market, followed by rising Chinese company Oppo. Rounding up the top 5 is Thailand's True, Taiwan's Asus and India's Lava.

Oppo's nabbing the second spot is another indicator of the growing Chinese company's newfound success. Oppo has gone from a relatively unknown brand a few years ago to the world's fourth largest in Q2 2016, breaking through with a year-on-year sales increase of 136 percent.

Jensen Ooi, IDC market analyst, chalks Oppo's success to "aggressive marketing initiatives." Sky Li, Oppo's vice president of International Mobile Business, says the "SEA region is a priority market for us and we aim to experience similar acceptance and success as we have in other markets."

Conspicuously absent from this list is Apple. According to Ooi, this is because "Apple's smartphones tend to be at the higher-end of the price band," a restricting factor in such a cost-sensitive region.

Overall, while the 28 million smartphones sold in Southeast Asia this quarter may not represent a large percentage of the 343 million smartphones sold worldwide this quarter, this is a figure that will rise as populous nations like Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam get aboard the smartphone train.