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Huawei Overtakes OPPO to Become the NO.1 Smartphone Company in China in 2017Q1

Published: May 08,2017

According to International Data Corporation (IDC), 104.1 million smartphones were shipped to China in 2017Q1. This was a mere 1% year-on-year (YoY) growth, in part the result of high inventory from the previous quarter. 2017Q1 was also relatively quiet aside from a few product launches like Huawei’s new P10, P10 Plus, and Honor V9.

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“Despite a soft first quarter in China, the second quarter should pick up sequentially given not only JD.com’s June promotions, but also activity around a number of new products like vivo with its Y53, Xiaomi with its Mi 6, Meizu with its E2, and Gionee with its M6S Plus,” says Tay Xiaohan, Senior Market Analyst with IDC Asia/Pacific's Client Devices team.

"Apple has been seeing double-digit YoY declines for the fifth quarter in a row, but we believe that Chinese consumers are holding out for the launch of Apple's 10-year anniversary iPhone at the end of the year, and this will help Apple to see a rebound in the China smartphone market," according to Tay.

Huawei has committed to opening more experience stores in key cities while OPPO will be opening more stores in Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities. Xiaomi, who used to focus on its online channel, has targeted to open 1,000 Mi Home stores in the next 3 years across China.

"Having one star flagship model that is marketed successfully is sufficient to significantly propel a company's shipments in the right direction. This can be aptly exemplified in OPPO's key flagship R9s which comprised close to half of its overall shipments. In light of the foregoing, whilst the Chinese companies can continue to innovate and try to outshine one another in the coming year, they can also consider focusing their resources on one or two key models with clear key messages than to stretch themselves thin and try to diversify their portfolio," ends Tay.

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