2020 EMEA Smartphone Market Posts Weakest Results in Six Years

2020 EMEA Smartphone Market Posts Weakest Results in Six Years

Foto: Depositphotos

The Europe, Middle East, and Africa smartphone market recorded its weakest performance in six years in 2020 due to the COVID-19 crisis, according to IDC. The market volume contracted 4.2% in units year on year, dropping to a total of 345.2 million. The market’s value likewise declined, by 4.6% year on year, to around $110 billion.

In Europe, the Tracker found that the market suffered a 4.9% slump year on year in unit terms, falling to 195.2 million. The market lost 3.0% in value year on year, declining to $82.4 million. "If you just looked at the topline numbers, you might think it was a typical year with a bit of an economic wobble, not one with a pandemic and months of national lockdowns, leading to a yawning economic downturn," says Zdenek Krouzel, program manager at IDC EMEA.

“Across Europe, consumers switched quickly to buying online when phone shops closed in spring 2020," says IDC EMEA Research Manager Marta Pinto. "The phone business did not get the same boost from home working as the PC market, but clearly consumers were valuing their phones more as they coped with the new stresses of living mainly within the same four walls.”

IDC’s Tracker reports that competition brought the average, before-tax retail price of an Android smartphone down to $278 in Europe in 2020. This marked an 8.5% year-on-year price drop. Apple, however, saw its average European smartphone sales price increase to $894. Apple recorded a strong 2020, finishing with its best Q4 ever on the European market.

IDC anticipates the European smartphone market will grow marginally in units and value in 2021. The Android market will remain competitive as brands vie to capture part of the share previously held by Huawei, which has declined due to U.S. sanctions. Samsung remains the undisputed leader of the European Android market ahead of Apple. Chinese Transsion was third, Xiaomi has captured some of Huawei’s share and went up to fourth place, while rival Chinese brands OPPO and vivo have, so far, made only moderate advances.

The COVID-19 pandemic stunted the expected growth of Android 5G devices in Europe in 2020, with 5G-capable phones capturing just one-tenth of the total smartphone volume. Apple's decision to make all iPhone 12 devices 5G-capable boosted the market in Q4. IDC expects as many as one in four smartphones shipped to Europe in 2021 to be 5G-capable.

More from category

Blockchain Investments in Europe Remain Stable

Blockchain Investments in Europe Remain Stable

19 Apr 2021 comment

European spending on blockchain solutions is forecast to be $2 billion in 2021, with a robust increase over 2020, when the market experienced slower growth due to the pause in investments brought about by COVID-19, according to IDC.

Digital Wallet Users to Exceed 4.4 Billion by 2025

Digital Wallet Users to Exceed 4.4 Billion by 2025

18 Apr 2021 comment

A new study from Juniper Research has found that the number of unique digital wallet users will exceed 4.4 billion globally in 2025; rising from 2.6 billion in 2020.

10 Percent of Workers Will Seek to Trick AI-Driven Tracking Systems by 2023

10 Percent of Workers Will Seek to Trick AI-Driven Tracking Systems by 2023

17 Apr 2021 comment

Gartner predicts that by 2023, more than one-in-ten workers will seek to trick AI systems used to measure employee behavior and productivity.