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China smartphone market shows recovery after worst 2022 sales

Beijing, Feb 15 (IANS) China’s smartphone market has recorded a good start to the new year and at the start of 2023, the sales quickly increased week over week to reach above 7 million, a report showed on Wednesday.

In four out of five weeks, the sales stayed above 6 million, a level seldom reached in 2022 when the pandemic haunted China’s cities from time to time.

The Chinese New Year season also started earlier than usual this year, helping the weekly sales walk out of the trough at the beginning of 2023, reports Counterpoint Research.

“China’s January holiday season smartphone sales show little YoY growth but this is good news,” said Archie Zhang, research analyst.

The average weekly sales during the period were 6.7 million units, much higher than the average of 5.5 million units in 2022.

In January, the monthly sales were flat compared to the previous year’s same month, which recorded the highest sales in 2022, but sequentially grew more than 40 per cent.

Apple remained China’s biggest original equipment manufacturer (OEM) in January in terms of sales share and its sales increased about 6 per cent YoY.

The smartphone market in China has contracted after 2017 in terms of YoY sales growth. Q4 2022 recorded a 15 per cent YoY decline, hitting major OEMs’ confidence and further darkening market prospects.

“The industry is skeptical that the strong sales in the first five weeks of 2023 are a solid indicator of a recovery in demand,” said Zhang.

“However, the strong sales do bring in some fresh air. They not only helped digest the newly added inventory but also ignited the discussion on whether the stagnant market will finally bottom out and rise in 2023,” said the report.

If the current growth momentum can persist through the end of Q1 2023, industry players should be more confident about a market recovery, it added.



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