Global smartphone sales sees largest decline on record in Q1

Smartphone sales across the globe plummeted by more than 20 per cent during the first quarter with nearly every major manufacturer seeing dramatic declines.

According to the latest figures from Gartner, the global smartphone market dropped 20.2 per cent year on year, marking the markets worst ever decline.

Global sales dropped from 375 million in 2019 to 299 million units in 2020.

READ MORE: Smartphone shipments drop to lowest rate since records began thanks to COVID-19

This saw four out of five of the world’s largest smartphone manufacturers including Apple, Samsung, Huawei and Oppo see significant declines of 8.2 per cent, 22.7 per cent, 27.3 per cent and 19.1 per cent respectively during the first three months of the year.

Only Chinese giant Xiaomi managed to achieve a slight uptick in sales of 1.4 per cent.

While lockdown and widespread job losses severely impacted appetites for new expensive smartphones, supply chains also took a massive hit from the closure of factories across China.

“If COVID-19 did not happen, the vendor would have likely seen its iPhone sales reached record level in the quarter. Supply chain disruptions and declining consumer spending put a halt to this positive trend in February,” Gartner’s research vice president  Annette Zimmermann said.

“Apple’s ability to serve clients via its online stores and its production returning to near normal levels at the end of March helped recover some of the early positive momentum.”

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