Apple: iPhone sales in China slump as Huawei rises, report says

  • By Mariko Oi
  • Business Correspondent

image source, Good pictures

Apple's iPhone sales in China fell 24% in the first six weeks of 2024 from a year earlier, according to research firm Counterpoint.

This comes as the US tech giant faces stiff competition in the country from local rivals.

In the same period, China's Huawei grew its sales in its domestic market by 64%, according to the report.

Apple and Huawei did not immediately respond to the BBC's requests for comment.

Aside from a resurgence in Huawei sales at the expensive end of the Chinese phone market, Apple is “squeezed in the middle by aggressive pricing from the likes of Oppo, Vivo and Xiaomi,” he said. Counterpoint Research's Mengmeng Zhang wrote:.

China, one of Apple's biggest markets, saw overall smartphone sales decline 7% over the same period, the report said.

Huawei has struggled for years due to U.S. sanctions, but its sales surged after it unveiled its Mate 60 series of 5G smartphones in August.

This came as a surprise as the Chinese firm was cut off from key chips and technology needed for 5G mobile internet.

In 2020, Honor, the smartphone brand spun off from Huawei, was the other top five brand to see sales increase in China during this period.

Sales of Vivo, Xiaomi and Oppo also fell in the first six weeks of the year, Counterpoint reported.

Apple's share of the Chinese smartphone market dropped from 19% last year to 15.7%, dropping from second to fourth.

Meanwhile, Huawei rose to second place as its market share grew to 16.5% from 9.4% a year ago.

Vivo remains China's best-selling smartphone maker despite a 15% drop in sales from last year, according to Counterpoint.

Apple started offering discounts on its official sites in China last month before subsidizing some iPhone models through its flagship stores on Alibaba's marketplace Tmall last week.

The company said China sales in the last three months of 2023 were $20.82bn (£16.4bn), up from $23.9bn a year earlier.

Apple shares fell 2.8% in New York trading on Tuesday.

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