After 6 years, Apple beats Vivo and Oppo to lead smartphone sales in China in Q4 2021: Counterpoint
According to research firm Counterpoint Research, Apple
gained its highest-ever market share in China in the fourth quarter, when it
was the top-selling vendor for the first time in six years.
The anniversary fell on the same day as the launching of the
iPhone 13 and came amid otherwise flat demand for handsets as Huawei's market
Apple's smartphone market share hit a new high of 23%, a new
high for the company. According to Counterpoint, its unit sales volume
increased 32% year over year in the quarter, while total smartphone sales in
China decreased 9%.
Mengmeng Zhang, a Counterpoint analyst, noted a lower
starting price in China and the impact of US sanctions against Huawei, Apple's
major high-end competitor, as factors.
Apple was last the top-selling smartphone brand in China in
late 2015, shortly after the company released the iPhone 6, which drew Chinese
buyers in with its huge screens.
Apple was the third best-selling smartphone brand in China
in 2021, with 16 percent of the market.
With 22 percent and 21 percent, respectively, Vivo and Oppo,
two Android handset brands owned by BBK Electronics, came in top and second.
Apple's unit sales increased 47 percent year over year,
while Huawei's fell 68 percent. According to Counterpoint, overall smartphone
sales in China declined by 2%.
Longer upgrade cycles have created a problem for Chinese
smartphone manufacturers trying to maintain growth at home, as users put off
purchasing new handsets.
Meanwhile, the whole electronics industry has been shaken by
a global chip and component scarcity, which has impacted prices and margins for
all hardware manufacturers.