Market Overview

Apple’s China iPhone sales jump 225% in the second quarter

Apple was the fastest-growing smartphone maker in China in the second quarter, according to research data, which showed that the iPhone maker bucked the overall decline in the world’s second-largest economy. The cheaper iPhone SE and the popularity of the iPhone 11 series, along with deep discounts, helped Apple get a boost in one of its most critical markets.

The sell-through volume for iPhones in China was 7.4 million units in the April to June quarter, a 32% growth year-on-year, according to Counterpoint Research. Sell-through refers to iPhones that go to Apple’s retail partners and is a close gauge to actual sales to consumers.

In comparison, Chinese phone maker Huawei saw sell-through volumes of 36.6 million units, or up 14% compared to a year ago. Apple sells significantly fewer phones than Huawei in China. Oppo, Vivo and Xiaomi, the brands that make up the rest of the top five biggest players in China, all saw significant declines, while the overall market fell 17% year-on-year.

Apple also offered big discounts on iPhones during a major online Chinese shopping festival in June which helped keep the momentum going. The cheaper second-generation iPhone SE was also among the top 3 best-selling iPhones in China in the second quarter, Counterpoint Research said in a note. On the services front, Apple also appeared fairly resilient. The App Store generated $4.4 billion in gross revenue in the second quarter, down 4% from $4.6 billion in the first quarter, according to data from Sensor Tower. However, that was a 13% year-on-year rise.

China turned on its 5G networks last November and its domestic smartphone makers have launched 5G-capable devices. 5G refers to next-generation mobile networks that promise super-fast data speeds. A third of smartphones sold in China in the second quarter were 5G handsets, the highest adoption in the world, according to Counterpoint Research. However, Apple does not yet have a 5G iPhone. But several analysts expect the next iPhone model, potentially named the iPhone 12, to support 5G.

Apple’s China iPhone sales jump 225% in the second quarter as recovery continues, research shows, CNBC, Jul 29

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