China’s smartphone market saw its biggest drop in demand since 2013

Smart phone shipments in China experienced their biggest decline in the first quarter, as shipments fell to 91 million units, according to a report by market analysts Canalys. Every year since 2013, shipments of Chinese smartphones have been able to reach or exceed 100 million units quarterly. This is the first quarter since the fourth quarter of 2013 that the figures have fallen below that benchmark.

Canalys experts suggest that the Chinese market simply feels exhausted by the endless marketing campaigns of each smartphone company. "The level of competition has forced each supplier to imitate other product portfolios and market launch strategies," said research analyst Mo Jia. Basically, smart phone companies should focus on developing models and varied features instead of saturating the market with iterative devices and multiple advertising campaigns.

The main sellers of smartphones such as Samsung, Meizu, Oppo and Vivo were hard hit by the sharp decline. The shipping numbers of Meizu and Samsung were reduced to less than half of their numbers year after year. Apple was not much better, being in fifth place by the number of shipments. We have communicated with Canalys to know the exact numbers. Vivo shipments dropped to 15 million, while Oppo shipments dropped to 18 million, both representing a fall of approximately 10 percent year-over-year for each respective company.

But in light of the great recession in the market, there were some winners continued to grow their market share. Xiaomi increased its number of telephones sent to 12 million units, representing an increase of 37 percent over the previous year. Granted, the first quarter of 2017 was a weak quarter for Xiaomi due to supply problems, so it is not an equivalent standard for comparison. But Xiaomi has been navigating the Chinese smartphone market with more budget offers than its competitors, and has been driven by the popularity of the Redmi Note 5 Pro.