China's Smartphone Market Dropped 14.3 Percent in 3Q20

84.8 million smartphones were shipped in China in the third quarter of 2020, down 14.3% year-on-year, according to IDC. This was the result of soft demand, Huawei’s supply constraints and delayed flagship launches from both Huawei and Apple.

"The escalated US trade restrictions in August ultimately impeded Huawei's momentum in its home market. Nevertheless, the ban did not cool off the enthusiasm of local Huawei loyalists that supported Huawei's market share to stay above the 40% mark," says Will Wong, Research Manager for Client Devices at IDC Asia/Pacific.

Huawei cautiously managed its shipments across its product lineups and lowered the production of some popular models. The company shipped 35.1 million devices, 6.4 million less than in the same period last year. vivo put more focus on various consumer segments at different price points and recorded a narrower decline from a year ago. The vendor shipped 15 million smartphones, 16.9% less than in 3Q19.

OPPO was third with 14.1 million devices and 14.2% drop YoY. Xiaomi was the only top 5 vendor that saw growth from a year ago. The company sold 11 million handsets. Apple’s delayed iPhone 12 launch resulted in lower shipments compared to the same period last year. It had a 13.1% drop from last year to 7 million devices shipped in the quarter.

China has so far shipped a total of 117 million 5G handsets since 2019, with 49.7 million in 3Q20 alone. Huawei continued to lead the 5G market, while OPPO and vivo remained in the second and third spots respectively, mainly supported by their under-$300 5G products. Xiaomi ranked fourth, followed by realme, which launched several new 5G models in September in both online and offline channels.

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