Peyton Cheng and Sean Lin, DIGITIMES Research, Taipei
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Falling 1.5% sequentially and 7.2% annually, fourth-quarter 2019 smartphone shipments to China remained weak mainly because vendors had difficulty depleting channel inventory, 5G infrastructure coverage was still limited, 5G phones still came with high price tags, telecom operators did not subsidize phones as keen as they did when 4G phones started becoming available and the world economy was weakened by lingering trade tensions. Despite the quarter being the traditional high season, shipments were not very strong.
The coronavirus outbreak has disrupted production and weakened consumer confidence, with all ICT sectors bracing for major declines in shipments. Digitimes Research has conducted analyses on three mobile device sectors, namely notebooks, smartphones and tablets in the wake of the outbreak.