New Mobile Phone Sales Data Q2 – Oppo rises, Apple starting to rot

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Chinese data service supplier, Ji Guang, recently published a Q2 report on the sales performance of smartphone brands in China. The data reveals a bad quarter for Apple and Samsung, but great news for local brands: Huawei, Oppo, Vivo and Xiaomi – who moved into the top 4 positions, ahead of Apple.

Huawei leads China’s market in sales Q2 2016160816_New mobile sales data_1

In the fierce battle for Chinese cell phone market, China’s domestic mobile phone manufacturer Huawei outperformed other competitors, ranking top with a sales volume of slightly above 16 million phone units (green graphic on left)  in the second quarter of 2016.

Previous market leaders, Apple and Samsung,  dropped to the fifth and sixth place respectively, both failing to reach the 10 million sales mark.  Ahead of the two internationals, after Huawei, were the three other local smartphone brands – Oppo, Vivo, and Xiaomi. They surpassed Apple and Samsung, by selling more than 12 million phone units each over the second quarter.

Oppo rises, and Apple rots160816_New mobile sales data_2

Huawei claimed the top spot among all the mobile brands with a particularly strong performance by selling 6 million phones in June alone. Another domestic brand Oppo also grew dramatically since April. Samsung and Apple gradually dropped out of top 4, showing a noticeable sales decline since January.  For example, Apple sold close to 6 million units in January, but in June sold less that 3 million.

Huawei is catching up with Apple in market penetration160816_New mobile sales data_3

Regarding market penetration in different regions of China, Huawei and Apple are now going ‘head-to-head’.  In first- and second-tier cities, Apple remained the most popular brand, accounting for more than 20% of the market, compared with Huawei at 17%. The other three Top 5 brands are Xiaomi, Samsung, and Oppo.

More developed cities tend to remain loyal to international brands, Apple and Samsung, while third- and below tier cities are more loyal to local brands. The leading mobile manufacturers in these regions were local brands – with Huawei, Xiaomi, and Oppo leading the rankings.

Overall, this seems to suggest that media spend and product innovation is making local phone brands and increasing pain point for Apple and Samsung.  Next quarters results will be interesting to see.

About Author

Tracy Zhang

As a Masters graduate of Foreign Trade, Tracy started her career helping supermarket brand City Shop to source the ‘hunger’ of Shanghai’s internationalizing consumers. Now that she has found her passion in consumer research, she is helping develop Resonance's ground-breaking ethnographic offer.

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