Smartphone shipments drop due to low demand, inflation

·3 min read

SMARTPHONE shipments to the Philippines declined by 3.1 percent in the second quarter of 2022 compared last year due to rising costs, according to the International Data Corp.’s (IDC) Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker.

Its quarter-on-quarter (QoQ) growth grew 9.1 percent, shipping 4.3 million units in the second quarter.

“The number of smartphone shipments below US$200 improved significantly QoQ, as players such as Transsion and Cherry Mobile launched new models in this segment, but remained low on an annual basis, due to low demand and supply. The number of shipments for models in the higher price categories also slowed down as consumer spending declined due to economic headwinds,” said Angela Medez, market analyst at IDC Philippines.

“The rising cost of living and higher prices of essential goods and staple foods will continue to put pressure on consumer spending on smartphone. IDC expects 2022 will end with marginal growth of two percent or flat compared to 2019,” added Medez.

Top 5 smartphone brands

For the sixth consecutive quarter, Realme remained in first place with 21.8 percent share of the smartphone market, with a growth rate at 17.5 percent QoQ and the introduction of its ninth series managed to drive its growth in the mid-range segment ($200-$400).

Realme launched its TikTok store, live shopping session, and became the first smartphone brand to do so in the Philippines.

Still in second place, Transsion’s total shipments increased by 152.2 percent YoY and 13.5 percent QoQ, capturing 20.5 percent of the market in the second quarter. Infinix’s retail expansion plans and marketing campaign catapulted the brand threefold YoY, accounting for nearly 60 percent of Transsion’s shipments.

Lower consumer spending has benefited Transsion with an average selling price of only $103, compared to $194 for the overall smartphone market.

Accounting for 14.6 percent of the smartphone market, Xiaomi climbed to the third place, growing by 1.2 percent YoY and 12.1 percent QoQ. Its Redmi 10C drove the low-end portfolio ($100$200), which made up 59.8 percent of its shipments and lowered its overall ASP to $167. Its sales through eTailers continued to drive growth with Xiaomi consistently listed as the best-selling mobile phone brand during Shopee’s monthly sales campaign.

Samsung dropped to fourth place, declining 23 percent QoQ and 12 percent YoY, accounting for 11 percent of the smartphone market after the A-series fell 23.9 percent compared to previous quarter. Its 5G smartphone market share grew by 146.2 percent compared to last year, making up almost 40 percent of Samsung total shipments.

Vivo returned to the top five ranking with its hero models, the Y15s and Y15a, driving shipments. The launch of several new models at different price points also increased their ultra low-end segment ($100) by 335.4 percent QoQ. Vivo hosted the first PUBG Turbo Cup Challenge, a mobile eSports championship.

“With telecommunications company PLDT recently announcing plans to shut down their 3G network by 2023, we may see a faster migration from feature phones or older smartphones to newer models that support 4G or 5G. Note that the number of 3G cellular subscribers in the Philippines are quite low at less than five percent of total subscribers,” said Medez.