Thursday, 28 July 2022 10:42

China's 2Q smartphone sales plumb fresh depths, vivo stays top Featured

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China's 2Q smartphone sales plumb fresh depths, vivo stays top Image by Mario Ohibsky from Pixabay

Smartphone sales in China have fallen to a fresh low in the second quarter of 2022, dropping 14.2% year-on-year, the technology analyst firm Counterpoint Research says.

No sales figures were provided, but going by the figures published by Counterpoint for the second quarter of 2021 — which was 75 million units — the 2Q 2022 figure would have been close to 64.4 million units.

The firm said the second quarter figure was less than half the peak reached in the fourth quarter of 2016, adding that the last time sales were this low was in the final quarter of 2012 when the iPhone 5 made its debut.

Among the brands, vivo kept its top spot during the quarter, followed by Honor and Oppo. Apple was fourth.

Senior analyst Ivan Lam said China's economy had grown only 0.4% year-on-year in the quarter, lower than the expected 0.8% to 1.0%.

china 2q 2022 cpoint

"During this period, major cities across China, including financial and manufacturing hub Pan-Shanghai, went through full or partial lockdowns," he said. "The hardest hit was the services sector, which fell into contraction territory, from 4% year-on-year growth in the first quarter to 0.4% in the second quarter.

"The deepest decline occurred in April’s consumption data, with total retail sales of consumer goods falling 11.1% year-on-year. Weak consumer sentiment combined with the high smartphone penetration rate in China resulted in poor Q2 performance of smartphone sales.”

Lam said sales had risen during the 618 e-commerce promotion period and with the gradual lifting of lockdowns in major cities.

"However, the sales during this promotion period were still down around 10% year-on-year," he added. "Given the low sales volume number for Q2 2022, we expect smartphone sales to rebound in the next quarter.

"At the same time, with the demand continuing to be underwhelming due to weak consumer sentiment and lack of new innovations, it is going to be very hard to make the situation better in the second half when compared to last year.”

china 2q 2022 sphone counterpoint

Commenting on the performance of key vendors, research analyst Mengmeng Zheng said: "During the quarter, vivo maintained its leadership. The mid-to-high-end S12 series helped vivo grab a good share in the US$250-US$399 segment. Sub-brand iQOO also received positive market feedback, especially from younger customers.

“Honor continued its great comeback by expanding its offline presence. With the lockdowns hitting major cities, Honor’s coverage in lower-tier cities, which saw fewer lockdowns, helped the brand steer through the turbulence in Q2 2022.

"It may be noted that Honor managed to take share from all the leading Chinese brands, including Huawei, during the quarter. It is time for Oppo and vivo, known as the 'offline channel kings', to take Honor seriously.”

Apple's showing during the quarter was due to iPhone 13 sales, while Xiaomi's Redmi K50 and Note 11 series helped it take the fifth spot.

Research analyst Archie Zhang said: “The increasing 5G penetration in China allows Xiaomi to tackle the shortage of 4G/LTE SoCs. But though its products can be seen on the shelves of more than 10,000 offline shops, Xiaomi is still grappling with sluggish sales.”

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Sam Varghese

Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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