The world’s largest smartphone market is not the United States. Heck, the U.S. isn’t even number two. China is number one followed by India with the U.S. in third place. But the Chinese smartphone market did not have a great 2022 and growth is not expected this year either according to analysts. The Chinese market might not show any growth until 2024 thanks to issues with the supply chain and weak consumer spending.
Smartphone sales have been weak in China even during the Singles’ Day holiday
The weakness in the Chinese smartphone market isn’t something that came out of the blue. For the first 11 months of last year, smartphone shipments were down 23.6% year-over-year according to the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology (CAICT). The latter is a scientific research institute run by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.
The iPhone was the top-selling smartphone brand in China as late as November 2022
Even this past November’s Singles’ Day was a flop. This is an unofficial Chinese holiday that falls on November 11 and it kicks off a season known for discounts on smartphone prices. The holiday celebrates those in China who are not in a relationship. Typically, phone sales in the country peak during this holiday. For 2022, Singles’ Day smartphone sales plunged by 36% on an annual basis to 22.2 million phones.
Chinese smartphone sales in 2022 will total 250 million to 260 million units according to CINNO. This would make it the worst year for smartphone sales in the world’s top market since 2015. CINNO’s Zhou doesn’t expect a quick recovery for the Chinese smartphone market this year. “Industrial production and market consumption will take time to recover gradually, and the impact (of China’s Covid policies) is expected to continue through the first half of 2023.”
Smartphone innovation is coming from China
The 4600mAh battery that will keep the lights on the Realme GT Neo 5 variant with 240W charging (there is another model with a 5000mAh battery and 150W charging) could charge from 0% to 100% in just nine minutes. Imagine being able to top off your phone’s battery in under 10 minutes.