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Huawei tops 2Q20 smartphone sales despite ‘largest-ever’ market decline

Based on the preliminary data from IDC (International Data Corp.) Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, Chinese brand Huawei reach the No. 1 position in the smartphone shipment with 55.8 million units in second quarter of 2020 (2Q20). In spite of the sharp decline in smartphone sales because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Huawei managed to achieve its highest-ever share (20.0%) of the global smartphone market.

IDC said these developments are due to the brand’s “tremendous growth in China — almost 10% year on year — which offset the large declines the company faced in every other region. However, the technology ban by some western countries “will continue to create uncertainty for Huawei in foreign markets.”

IDC’s data show a 16% YoY decrease in smartphone shipment for 2Q20. In total, companies shipped 278.4 million smartphones during the period. According to IDC, although this a larger decline than in the first quarter, it was expected as major economies around the globe were in lockdown for the majority of 2Q20 due to the pandemic.


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“Smartphone shipments suffered a huge decline in Q2 as they directly correlate to consumer spending, which had a massive reduction due to the global economic crisis and rising unemployment brought on by the widespread lockdowns,” said Nabila Popal, research director with IDC’s Worldwide Mobile Device Trackers.

“This, combined with the closure of retail stores, especially in regions where online shopping is less common, compounded the negative effect on smartphone sales. In addition, consumers spent significantly other technologies, such as PCs, monitors, and tablets, to facilitate mandatory work from home and distance learning, leaving an even smaller share in the shrinking consumer wallet for smartphones.”

Top 5

Rounding up the Top 5 are Samsung, which shipped 54.2 million smartphones in 2Q20, finishing a close second with 19.5% share; Apple shipped 37.6 million iPhones in 2Q20, which placed the company in third with 13.5% share of the market; Xiaomi shipped 28.5 million devices maintaining its number four position and achieving a 10.2% market share despite a decline of 11.8%; OPPO returned to the Top 5 this quarter with 24.0 million units and 8.6% market share despite an 18.8% year-on-year decline.

Asia/Pacific (excluding China and Japan), Western Europe, and the United States declined 31.9%, 14.8%, and 12.6%, respectively. China fared slightly better with a decline of 10.3% and shows some early signs of market recovery.

“The smartphone supply chain ground to a halt when the pandemic hit. However, recovery, specifically in China, has been strong,” said Ryan Reith, vice president, Worldwide Mobile Device Trackers. “The question now becomes what does demand look like with so much uncertainty around the world. We have already seen OEMs moving more aggressively with their 5G portfolios both in terms of production and price points. However, we still see consumer demand for 5G being low, so the supply-side push is likely to produce very high-priced competition.”