When will global smartphone sales recover


In the first quarter, smartphone shipments were down 12%. According to analysts, the regression will be even more pronounced in the second quarter

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Global smartphone sales will decline in 2020 due to weak demand amid the economic downturn with the coronovirus epidemic. Market recovery is not expected before 2021, with analysts predicting Fitch ratings.

According to reports, smartphone sales declined by 12% year-on-year in January-March. Fitch experts believe the regression will be even more pronounced in the second quarter, as most retail stores were closed and consumers were at home due to quarantine. In the second half of the year, the post-pandemic economic recovery and people’s return to normal life may improve. But due to the continued threat of the second wave of COVID-19, shipments are likely to be lower than they were a year ago.

In general, smartphone shipments will decline by 15–17% in 2020. Among the main reasons for the decline, experts call unemployment and low income, as consumers will limit their costs and use existing smartphones.

By the way, in the last years, the smartphone market also saw negative dynamics. So, in 2018, IDC experts reported a drop of 4%, and in 2019 – up to 2%.

According to Fitch, Samsung Electronics will maintain its leadership in the smartphone market, and the company’s market share will decline by about 20-21%. Huawei will take second place with an attendance rate of 17–18%, but experts warn of difficulties outside the PRC market due to US sanctions. Apple will close the top three, although in the second half of the year, analysts do not rule out a decline in iPhone shipments.

In 2021, smartphone demand should increase, but the positive trend will depend on the situation in the economy and how strong the willingness of users to switch to 5G.

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According to the researchers, global production of smartphones in the first quarter decreased by 10% compared to the same quarter last year. Overall, around 280 million units were built, the lowest figure in the last five years.

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