A 4% year-over-year decline in Chinese iPhone sales may seem like bad news for Apple, but in the context of a 25% decline in the country’s smartphone market as a whole, it’s actually the opposite.
It may also seem strange to track sales over a specific 18-day period in June, but there’s a good reason for that…
The US has Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Amazon Prime Day — and many people are putting off purchases until these dates, to make a deal themselves. But these are nothing compared to the shopping festivals in China! Only one of these generates more revenue than all three US events combined.
This is partly due to the size of the population, and partly because Chinese shopping festivals run anywhere from a few days to over three weeks. Both e-commerce companies and major brands see a significant amount of their annual revenue coming in during these events, so consumer spending is closely tracked.
The 6.18 festival started as a promotion for the 10th anniversary of online shopping giant JD.com, and has since evolved into an 18-day shopping festival worth billions of dollars.
Chinese iPhone sales at 6.18
Market intelligence firm Strategy Analytics said about 14 million smartphones were sold during the 6.18 festival this year, and China’s iPhone sales show that Apple was the biggest winner.
According to new research from Strategy Analytics, 14 million units of smartphones were sold during the 6.18 online shopping festival in China this year, down 25% year-on-year. Apple consolidated its leadership at the expense of Chinese brands. Xiaomi and Honor follow and occupy the number one spot in the top three list.
“COVID-related disruptions and economic headwinds have caused mixed performance,” said Linda Sui, Senior Director at Strategy Analytics. “The price of online smartphone sales has soared to over CNY 4,300 (over $660) this year thanks to the larger combination of The highest priced iPhones, up +13% YoY. However, the total online smartphone sales revenue still registered a 16% YoY decline with CNY62.6 billion (US$9.5 billion).”
Bingbing, analyst at Strategy Analytics added, “Apple consolidated its leadership with an impressive performance during the 6.18 Fest this year. Apple outperformed the market selling nearly 7 million iPhone units, down a modest -4% year-on-year. We estimate that Apple With revenue of CNY 41.5 billion (USD 6.3 billion), with a full retail price of more than CNY 6,300 (USD 950).Apple ranked first in terms of revenue share across all major platforms (JD, TMall, Pinduoduo, etc.) )”.
Smartphone sales on TikTok
One surprising fact that has been revealed is that TikTok has become an important driver of online sales.
JD.com remains the main platform. We estimate that approximately 49% of smartphones were sold through JD.com during 6.18 online festivals this year, followed by TMall and Taobao (together accounting for 30% of the volume share).
However, the leadership and dominance of traditional e-retailers (JD.com, TMall, Taobao and Pinduoduo) has been affected by rising streaming platforms, such as TikTok and Kuaishou that have been catching up quickly. We estimate that TikTok and Kuaishou contributed 8% and 6% of online smartphone sales this year through 6.18, up from 3% and 2% last year.
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