iOS Drops to Lowest Share of China Smartphone Market in Nearly Three Years

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Apr 13, 2017.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Apple's iOS has dropped to its lowest share of the smartphone market in urban China since July 2014, according to new data collected and shared by Kantar Worldpanel. Today's report specifically details smartphone shares around the world for the three months ending in February 2017. In total, devices running iOS dropped 8.9 percentage points from the same year-ago quarter, receding from 22.1 percent of the China market to 13.2 percent.

    Apple rival Android remains the dominant force in China at 86.4 percent of the smartphone market in the country, growing 9.3 percentage points year-over-year. Although the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus remained the top selling devices in China, Apple has trouble competing with local vendors -- like Oppo and Vivo -- who produce cheaper smartphones at a massive rate that are far easier to obtain by the Chinese consumer.

    Not much has changed for either iOS or Android in the United States since Kantar's last report, although the latter OS has continued to see a decline in market share throughout December, January, and February. Android has dropped three percentage points when compared to the same year-ago quarter, now accounting for 55.9 percent of the U.S. smartphone market, while iOS has grown by 3.7 percentage points year-over-year to take 42 percent of the market in the U.S.

    As in China, iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus remained the top-selling smartphones in the U.S., which the devices have been since Kantar's report on the three months ending November 2016. Kantar's analysts cited hope that Google Pixel "might soften the drop in Android sales" that happen annually around every iPhone launch -- and which dropped even more dramatically last year because of the Note7 -- but the Pixel doesn't appear to have picked up the slack for the Android market in the U.S.

    In terms of overall growth, iOS saw its biggest percentage point increase in the quarter happen in Great Britain, growing 4.5 percentage points year-over-year. In most of Europe's big five markets -- Great Britain, Germany, France, Italy, and Spain -- Apple has done well to boost sales of iOS devices, with France housing the biggest growth for the Apple operating system over the holidays. Outliers still remain, like Spain's 1.7 percentage point dip in today's report.

    Kantar's report also looked forward to the rest of 2017, admitting that the three months ending in February is a "challenging time" to report on due to its awkward middle ground proximity between the holiday season last year, and upcoming announcements at events like WWDC in the summer.
    Apple CEO Tim Cook has remained vocal in his optimism about the company's presence -- and future -- in China, mentioning in an earnings call last year that, "We may not have the wind at our backs that we once did, but it's more stable than the common view of it." More recently, Cook went into even more detail about Apple's China plans, stating that, "We're not just someone who's here to access the market," and that the company intends to bolster its presence in the country through providing jobs and improving people's standard of living.

    Article Link: iOS Drops to Lowest Share of China Smartphone Market in Nearly Three Years
  2. Radon87000 macrumors 604

    Nov 29, 2013
  3. jlasoon macrumors 6502a

    Jun 1, 2006
    Orlando, FL
  4. dannyyankou macrumors 604


    Mar 2, 2012
    Scarsdale, NY
    Not surprising, China has some very cheap android phones. It's hard to compete when you're trying to sell the most expensive option.
  5. Jsameds macrumors 68040

    Apr 22, 2008
    Apple are a one trick at a time pony, but over the years have had plenty of tricks.
  6. M.PaulCezanne macrumors 6502a


    Mar 5, 2014
    Yeah, Apple execs.
  7. Zaft macrumors 68040


    Jun 16, 2009
    Brooklyn, NY
  8. jamesnajera macrumors 6502

    Oct 5, 2003
    So is Apple selling less iPhones year over year or is the Chinese smart phone market expanding with people that would not have a smart phone acquiring a free android phone?
  9. macfacts macrumors 68030


    Oct 7, 2012
    These cheap android phones are available in usa too. I suspect it is because there is no iphone upgrade program in China.
  10. Suckfest 9001 macrumors 65816

    Suckfest 9001

    May 31, 2015
    Especially when a lot of these cheap Android phones are a lot better
  11. marty11 macrumors 6502

    Oct 9, 2011
    You know what will solve this market share problem? A $1000 iphone.
  12. jayducharme macrumors 68040


    Jun 22, 2006
    The thick of it
    It's amazing to me that Windows phones are still clinging to life in Europe.

    I'm not at all surprised that Android still dominates the smartphone landscape. When multiple manufacturers are making multiple devices running that system on cheap phones, naturally that's the system that will be prevalent.
  13. dannyyankou macrumors 604


    Mar 2, 2012
    Scarsdale, NY
    I think average income has something to do with it too, it's a lot lower than the USA
  14. vmistery macrumors 6502a

    Apr 6, 2010
    Not hugely surprising considering the average wage in china although increasing is still low compared to the USA and Western Europe. People probably just don't upgrade their iPhones as often.
  15. MH01 Suspended


    Feb 11, 2008
    Maybe it's just a phone for many..... 90% of the functionality at 20% price.

    I suspect the "elitist" image of the iPhone has worn off, there are so many in the wild these days , nothing special about it anymore. Apple did themselves no favours with the 6 design running three years, for many it's about bling....and when people cannot tell the difference from a 6 to 7, people will jump Android to show off. Just a theory . And why the Samsung S8 is getting good feedback
  16. 78Bandit macrumors 6502a


    Jun 13, 2009
    I bet this has to do more with the fact China ranks about 90th on the list of per capita income. The average family income in China is less than $5,000 per year. As a result the percentage of families who can afford a $650+ phone is comparatively small to a country like the U.S. where family income is five times higher.

    You had an initial surge when the iPhone was originally sold officially in China a couple of years ago, but now most everyone that wants one and can afford one has bought one. The number of Chinese who can upgrade every year or two is going to be much lower than the U.S. so a retrenchment is not unexpected.

    What this does go to show is that China is not the vast, untapped potential of Apple customers that was predicted. There is a peak and China reached it rather quickly.
  17. keysofanxiety macrumors G3


    Nov 23, 2011
    True, but when the iPhone 8 is released that'll sell like hotcakes in China, no matter what it looks like or costs (providing it's called the 8).
  18. codydale macrumors member


    Jun 2, 2014
    This all (or for the vast majority of reasons) comes down to money as well as average income for these countries. Not to mention disposable income... Several of these countries listed have an average income where it is difficult to sustain day-to-day life and an iPhone or any premium smartphone for that matter is simply superfluous. Great Britain and the United States on the other hand, where nearly half of people own and use an iOS device, that disposable income is present and for some is much much greater than those other parts of the world. (This is not to mention that some people in Britain and the US buy items that they cannot or should not afford as well ;))
  19. dmylrea macrumors 68020


    Sep 27, 2005
  20. now i see it macrumors 68030

    Jan 2, 2002
    The beginning of the smartphone era was a different time. iPhone really was the device to get. But nowadays, other manufacturers have caught up and sell their devices for a lot cheaper. All smartphones do pretty much the same thing now, so the iPhone really is more of luxury smartphone than a device for the masses. Luxury has a place in this world, but it will never be the most popular.
  21. H2SO4 macrumors 601

    Nov 4, 2008
    It’s about time that somebody comes along and says that market share is unimportant isn’t it? Anyhow, hopefully this is the wake up call that Apple need.
  22. Juan007 macrumors 6502a


    Jun 14, 2010
    This is mostly due to Chinese government interference. Everyone would buy Apple, if they were able to and had the money!
  23. joeblow7777 macrumors 603

    Sep 7, 2010
    What's more important, market share or profit? They're not mutually exclusive, but they're not the same either.
  24. joueboy macrumors 65816

    Jul 3, 2008
    The only presence of Apple in China I could think of is their production. People who says China is an important consumer wise because they have the biggest population in the world. There is a market for rich people but not for regular citizens. Apple products pricing is not ideal for country like China if they have to pay all their income for 3 months just to buy an iPhone. Stop acting like other countries is like us, most of their citizens cannot afford an iPhone. Even in the US some people already thinks Apple products are overpriced. Android phones works just fine for everybody else and they still have leftovers for their meals a day.
  25. KidAKidB macrumors 6502


    Oct 1, 2014
    When Tim Cook and company get on stage and keep bragging about China and how well they're doing in China, it is pretty embarrassing to see Apple losing steam rather than growing like they try to sell when on stage.
    --- Post Merged, Apr 13, 2017 ---
    But then you have countries like Germany or France where income is high and yet Android is still much more prevalent.

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