Huawei is the lone winner as China’s Q1 smartphone sales plunge

Smartphone sales in China fell 22% in the first quarter as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak, according to a report released Wednesday, with embattled Chinese smartphone maker Huawei the only manufacturer that saw a growth in the quarter.

Why it matters: The coronavirus outbreak has accelerated a downward trend in the world’s largest smartphone market.

  • Analysts had forecasted a year-on-year drop of 15% to 20% in China’s Q1 smartphone shipments caused by delayed factory reopenings in February.
  • The report by market research firm Counterpoint Research also attributed the decline to “dismal sales” in February. But e-commerce platforms, it said, have helped smartphone vendors to recover some of the losses.

“The drastic fall in Q1 China market was primarily dragged down by the dismal sales of smartphones in February (-35% YoY)… However, during the lockdown period in China, local e-commerce giants such as Alibaba and managed to sustain efficient business operations and delivery services in major Chinese cities outside of Hubei province. For the strong support from these e-commerce players, China’s smartphone sales appeared less negative than our original expectation.”

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Written by Aakash Malu


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