Smartphone shipments to China slip over 10% sequentially in 1Q23, but to stay flat in 2Q23, says DIGITIMES Research

Luke Lin, DIGITIMES Research, Taipei 0


Smartphones shipped to the China market shrank to only 62 million units in the first quarter of 2023, down 12.4% sequentially and 7.2% on year, but the volumes in the second quarter are expected to stay at about the same level as in the first, according to DIGITIMES Research's latest figures from the report covering China's smartphone market.

The declines in the first quarter were attributed to some brand vendors who already pre-stocked extra inventory in December 2022 for their promotions during the Lunar New Year holidays that took place in mid-January, while most brand vendors' sales in the latter two months of the first quarter after the holidays were unsatisfactory.

Among the top-5 Chinese smartphone brands, Oppo, Honor, Vivo and Xiaomi all experienced an on-year decline in their shipments to the China market in the first quarter with Huawei being the only brand with an on-year shipment growth, the report shows.

In terms of all smartphone brands' shipments to China, the top-5 brands were Oppo, Apple, Honor, Vivo, and Xiaomi in the first quarter with Apple slipping from the top position to second, Oppo climbing from third to top, and Honor falling from second to third.

The top-5 brands' combined shipment share was 88.7% in the first quarter, lower than fourth-quarter 2022's 91.1% due to number-6 Huawei having enjoyed a market-share uplift.

Brand vendors were cautious with their inventory preparation for the 618 shopping festival as consumers' demand for smartphones remains in a downturn in the second quarter. The volumes are expected to stay flat from a quarter ago in the second quarter but with a small on-year decline.

In terms of brand vendors' rankings, Apple is expected to plunge from number-2 to fourth place in the second quarter as sales of the iPhone 14 series will decelerate in China.