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IDC says worldwide smartphone market suffers largest decline due to pandemic

As governments imposed lockdowns and quarantines limiting movements of people, the global economy is already expected to experience a sharp decline. Now, industry analyst firm International Data Corp. (IDC) reported an 11.7% decrease in smartphone shipments in the first quarter of 2020 (1Q20).

IDC notes that declines in the first quarter are normal but so far, this year’s figures is the largest annual (year over year) decline “ever.”

The largest regional decline in 1Q20 was in China, which saw shipments drop 20.3% year over year. Since China constitutes almost a quarter of worldwide shipments, this had a huge impact on the overall market. The global dependency on China for its smartphone supply chain also caused major issues as the quarter progressed. Other regions that contributed to the drastic worldwide decline were the United States and Western Europe, which declined by 16.1% and 18.3% respectively.

IDC: Smartphone shipments forecast to decline by 2.3% in 2020

IDC: Apple takes top spot as global smartphone market declines in Q419

Smartphone brands

Samsung remains on the top of the brand’s list having shipped 58.3 million smartphones in 1Q20. Huawei held the No. 2 position with a 17.8% share of the global smartphone market despite a decline in shipments of 17.1% year over year.

Apple shipped 36.7 million iPhones in 1Q20, which placed the company in third with a 13.3% share. However, shipments were down only 0.4% year over year, which is the lowest annual decline among the top 3 vendors. This is primarily due to the continued success of its iPhone 11 series.

Xiaomi’s market share surpassed 10% for the first time with year-over-year growth of 6.1%. In India, the company launched the new Poco and Redmi products just before the full lockdown began, helping some of its 1Q20 numbers.

vivo returned to the Top 5 this quarter with a 9% market share and 7.0% year-over-year growth, the largest annual growth rate among the top 5. Success in India has also been a key driver for vivo’s low-end and mid-range Y and S series. Nevertheless, due to the full lockdown in India, vivo also faced delays in its product launch.

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