AES Semigas


30 October 2023

Smartphone shipments on track for recovery after only slight decline in Q3

Worldwide smartphone shipments declined by 0.1% year-on-year to 302.8 million units in third-quarter 2023, according to preliminary data from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker. Although macro-economic uncertainties linger as markets struggle with soft demand, inflation and geopolitical tensions, healthy inventory and the slower pace of decline are encouraging some vendors to increase shipments.

“We are seeing a strong ramp up of shipments in emerging markets by vendors like Xiaomi and Transsion,” notes Nabila Popal, research director with IDC’s Mobility and Consumer Device Trackers. “While this is a good sign of approaching recovery, vendors must keep a close eye on sell-through to avoid falling into excess inventory again, as demand is still weak in many regions,” he adds. “Meanwhile, on the other end of the spectrum, we see Apple growing in all regions except China, where it’s facing renewed competition from Huawei as well as heightened macroeconomic uncertainties that are causing consumers who once used to rush for the latest iPhones to pause and think more carefully about their purchases.”

China saw shipments declined for a tenth consecutive quarter, falling by 6.3% year-on-year in Q3/2023. Rising youth unemployment, the ongoing real-estate crisis and deflation have significantly dampened consumer spending and the broader macroeconomic environment in China. Elsewhere, shipments in Europe, Japan and the USA fell by 8.6%, 5.3% and 1.1%, respectively. However, emerging markets like the Middle East and Africa (MEA), Latin America (LA) and Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan and China) saw Q3/2023 shipment growth of 18.1%, 8.2% and 1.3%, respectively.

“The continued growth in the high-end market feels counter-intuitive considering the economic challenges we are seeing across the globe,” says Anthony Scarsella, research director, Mobile Phones at IDC. “Yet the high-end continues to flourish due to generous trade-in and financing options in many developed markets,” he adds. “However, as consumers choose premium models, the refresh cycle will continue to extend. Superior build quality, increased storage, premium features, and longer support cycles drive buyers towards the high-end as these devices last well beyond most affordable models.”

See related items:

Smartphone shipments to fall 1.1% in 2023, rather than prior forecast of 2.8% growth

Quarterly smartphone shipments fall a record 18.3% year-on-year to 300.3 million in Q4/2022

Tags: Smartphone shipments



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