The latest report from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker shows that worldwide smartphone shipments declined 18.3% year over year to 300.3 million units in the fourth quarter of 2022 (4Q22). This drop marks the largest-ever decline in a single quarter and contributed to a steep 11.3% decline for the year. In 2022, shipments of 1.21 billion units saw the lowest annual total since 2013, due to decreased consumer demand, inflation, and economic uncertainties.
Nabila Popal, research director at IDC, declared that shipments in the holiday quarter have never been lower than the preceding quarter but, due to weaker demand and an abundance of inventory, vendors were forced to reduce their shipments substantially. The evidence from this holiday quarter demonstrates that increasing inflation and expanding macroeconomic worries are curbing consumer spending more than anticipated, and consequently delaying any potential recovery until late 2023.
Samsung took the lead in terms of shipment value share with a 22% share, followed by Apple, with 18.8%. The top five vendors of the year – Samsung, Apple, Xiaomi, Oppo, and vivo – all saw double-digit declines in shipments. Apple was the top smartphone maker in the fourth quarter with 72.3 million units shipped, down 14.9% year on year, and a 24.1% market share. Samsung was second with 58.2 million units shipped, followed by Xiaomi at 33.2 million, Oppo at 25.3 million, and Vivo at 22.9 million.
In China, Apple was responsible for a leading 20.6% of Q4 2022 smartphone shipments. The company's share matched its market share during the same quarter last year even though it shipped 12.7% fewer phones. In the fourth quarter of the year, Vivo had a 17.5% share of the smartphone market in the country.
Samsung was the second largest producer, shipping 58.2 million units, a 15.6% decrease compared to the previous year. Xiaomi's shipments declined 26.3% to 33.2 million and Oppo and vivo rounded out the top five with 25.3 million and 22.9 million units, respectively. Even Apple suffered a setback in its supply chain with unforeseen lockdowns at its key factories in China.
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