New Canalys data reveal that Apple has stumbled to fifth place in China's smartphone market. It also reported that Apple's shipments dropped to 43.8 million, which was 18.2 percent lower than 2015.
According to 9to5 Mac, the tech giant struggled in China as the iPhone was being outshined by cheaper handsets such as Huawei, Vivo and Oppo. The three local companies are competing with marketing strategies and brand building
Huawei shipments of 76.2 million units got the highest ranking in the country's smartphone market in 2016. Oppo is in the second spot with 73.2 million units and followed by Vivo with 63.2 million.
Meanwhile, Apple got the fifth place next to Xiaomi. Canalys also revealed that both Apple and Xiaomi have declining sales. Apple's market share fell 15.2 percent in 2015 to 10.7 percent in 2016 while Xiaomi recorded shipments of 51.4 million units. The decline in Apple's unit sales in China saw a global shipments decline of seven percent in 2016, as per Mac Rumors.
Canalys research analyst, Jessie Ding, revealed that Apple, Xiaomi are still in the process of adjusting their marketing strategies in China, as well as the South Korean company Samsung. Ding also unveiled that Huawei consolidated its position in the the tier-1 and tier-2 cities. The next companies on the spot, Vivo and Oppo, were focusing tier-three and tier-four cities. These companies are now focusing on investments in marketing branding, which is making the competition on the global market more intense.
Canalys further revealed that smartphone shipments achieved 476.5 million units, which is an increase of 11.4 percent from 2015 levels. China's sales reached 131.6 million units in the final quarter of 2016, representing about 33 percent of overall shipments worldwide.
Canalys pointed out that the Chinese market is anticipating the 10th anniversary of the iPhone with high expectations. The research firm added that in Q4 of 2016, Apple made it to the top of the global smartphone industry.