China: iPhone Sales See Year-over-year Improvement

iPhone 14 Pro | China
Image: Business Inside

Counterpoint Research’s latest market intelligence data revealed that iPhone sales in China experienced a year-over-year growth of 6% during the Chinese New Year holiday season. This was supported by the overall increase in smartphone sales during the same period, with sales quickly rising to above seven million units in the first week of 2023.

In four out of five weeks, sales remained above six million units, a level that was rarely achieved in 2022 due to the pandemic. The average weekly sales during the period were 6.7 million units, higher than the 5.5 million unit average in 2022. Although January’s monthly sales were flat compared to the same period in 2022, they grew more than 40% sequentially.

Despite the effects of the pandemic on supply and demand, Apple maintained its position as China’s largest OEM in terms of sales share and experienced 6% year-over-year growth in sales. However, some experts remain doubtful about the industry’s resurgence, citing pent-up demand from December and the earlier-than-usual Chinese New Year season as potential factors.

Many distributors are cautious when making wholesale orders due to the large levels of inventory they were previously forced to hold on their shelves. Counterpoint Research is more optimistic, anticipating annual expansion in the smartphone market, although this growth is expected to be in the low single digits.

Apple China

In February, Apple reduced the price of its iPhone 14 Pro models in China by 800 yuan ($118) to offset declining demand. This move reportedly led to the quick sell-out of the iPhone 14 Pro variants in some retailers’ stock before schools reopened in China.

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