Wednesday, 04 May 2022 08:52

US smartphone sales fell 6% in 1Q22 as demand cooled: Counterpoint Featured

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US smartphone sales fell 6% in 1Q22 as demand cooled: Counterpoint Image by Dariusz Sankowski from Pixabay

Smartphone sales in the US fell 6% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2022, the technology analyst firm Counterpoint Research reports, adding that this was due to a cooling of demand that had been generated by the pandemic.

The company provided no figures in its statement. But going by its own figures for the first quarter of 2021, US sales for that period were close to 93 million units.

And a drop of 6% from that figure means that the first quarter of 2022 saw about 87.4 million units being sold.

Of the sales in the first quarter in 2022, research director Jeff Fieldhack said: “While 1Q 2022 did see weaker sales compared to last year, this needs to be seen in context. It is not a sign of the market contracting because last year’s 1Q was unusually high due to several factors driving demand.

"Apple’s iPhone 12 series sales pushed into 1Q 2021 due to its staggered launch causing higher premium demand in a usually soft quarter. [The] US$1500 (A$2112) stimulus cheques were also given out, which helped boost the economy that was suffering from COVID-19 impacts.

"LTE sales saw an uptick due to tax-season discounts and pent-up demand in 1Q 2021. Looking at 1Q 2022, there were still solid performances from Apple and Samsung, with Motorola, Google, TCL and OnePlus seeing year-on-year increases in volumes due to LG’s exit.”

us smartphone 1q2022

Regarding the performance of the various OEMs, research analyst Matthew Orf said: “Apple and Samsung continued to dominate the market with a combined 75% share and had some of their best performances to date.

"However, some attention should also be paid to smaller OEMs that are beginning to capture more mindshare of consumers due to LG’s exit. Motorola has been very aggressive, becoming the third largest OEM in 2021. In Q1 2022, its market share reached 12%, the highest quarterly share to date.

"Motorola is refreshing its G series with new 5G devices in Q2 — the Moto G Stylus 5G 2022 and Moto G 5G — which will help the OEM increase its 5G sales in 2022. TCL also made big gains in market share to reach almost 3%.

"While known for its TVs, TCL has been putting in extra marketing efforts to win mindshare in pre-paid channels. It won several SKUs at Metro by T-Mobile, with the TCL 20 XE and TCL 30 XE 5G helping it gain market share.

"OnePlus did grow in share year-on-year, but the OEM had a slow quarter overall as the increased low-end competition resulted in contracted sales. The launch of the OnePlus 10 Pro has been relatively weak, but the OEM hopes to recapture some share with the new N20 5G that will launch early in 2Q.”

Counterpoint pointed to the following as its highlights for the quarter:

  • Apple revenues reached over US$14 billion. iPhone 13 sales made up close to 80% of all iPhone sales in the quarter. This is the highest sales share mix for new devices to date.
  • Samsung had a 28% market share. The S22 and A-series launches gave Samsung its highest market share since 1Q 2014.
  • Motorola reached its highest 1Q market share to date at 12%. The Moto G Stylus 5G, Moto G Pure and Moto G Play 2021 were the top three best-selling devices during the quarter.
  • OnePlus sales were up 21% year-on-year. The OEM’s growth cooled somewhat, but it remained active in T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile as it started to refresh its portfolio in March and April.
  • Google increased sales 152% year-on-year. The Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro made up over 90% of sales.
  • Alcatel-TCL continued to reclaim market share, reaching 3% in the quarter. It was heavily affected by COVID-19 shutdowns in 2020, but continued to win SKUs in T-Mobile, TracFone and Boost Mobile.
  • MediaTek registered its highest Android market share to date at 37%. It captured share especially through its LTE SoCs, where it dominated with more than 54% market share in LTE devices.
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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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