The Chinese smartphone market may have declined 9% YoY but has seen a 3% QoQ increase in sales last quarter (Q3 2021). The growth has still been uninspiring though thanks to a weak consumer demand coupled with component shortages, especially 4G SoCs.
While the overall smartphone sales may have been weak, there has been quite a reshuffle, mainly due to Honor‘s comeback (via: Counterpoint Research). The company has overtaken Xiaomi with a QoQ growth of an astonishing 96%. It now holds a 15% share, undercutting Xiaomi by just 1%. Vivo and Oppo have continued to lead the market with 23% and 20% shares respectively.
However, Oppo and Vivo’s growth is backed primarily by successful budget phones. Vivo was driven by the Vivo S10/S10 Pro, Y31s, and Y52s, while OPPO was mainly driven by the OPPO Reno 6, OPPO A55, and OPPO A93. Huawei may have taken the backseat following the Huawei ban but Chinese OEMs have struggled to fill in the hole left by the company, and are still limited to the sub-$500 range.
Tackling the high-end price range after the downfall of Huawei thus continues to remain a challenge for Chinese OEMs. Huawei was after all one of the few Chinese companies that had gained global recognition in the flagship segment, thanks to it giving much more than what the competition was offering at the same price. Take the Huawei Mate and P series for example.
Therefore, while Chinese OEMs continue to struggle to try to prove themselves in the premium segment, Apple iPhones are still the most-preferred high-end smartphones by consumers in China. There has been a 9% QoQ dip in terms of sales for the company though in China, indicating that other companies could be catching up.
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