IPhone Sales Fell 20 Percent in China in Q4

Apple's iPhone shipments plunge in China as Huawei tightens grip

Apple's iPhone shipments plunge in China as Huawei tightens grip

Huawei, which briefly surpassed Apple to become the world's No. 2 smartphone brand in 2018, remains the runaway leader at home.

Apple doesn't provide unit sales figures anymore, but the firm announced in January that its quarterly revenues from iPhone had plummeted 15 percent, year-over-year.

Apple reported a 19.9 per cent decline in shipments in China in the fourth quarter, but climbed one place to No 4 in smartphone shipments after Xiaomi did even worse, tumbling 34.9 per cent during the same period, according to a report by research firm IDC, published on Monday.

"The imbalance between the increasingly severe domestic market environment and Apple's high product unit price has led to the declines of iPhone shipments in Chinese market", IDC said in the Chinese-language research report shared on its official WeChat account.

Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook has seen China as a key part of Apple's strategy: last fiscal year the company generated nearly $52 billion in revenue from Greater China, a region that includes Hong Kong.

However, as per the IDC report, the iPhone maker isn't the worst performing brand as Xiaomi Corp, another China-based company, fared even worse in the final months of previous year as its shipments plunged nearly 35 percent. The Chinese slowdown was also the driving factor behind Apple's first revenue outlook cut in nearly two decades. That's despite grappling with an unusually turbulent few months during which its finance chief was arrested on allegations of bank fraud, and the US marshalled its allies to try and block the company from selling next-generation networking equipment.

Apple and Xiaomi Corp have both encountered a slump in shipments in China in the December quarter, the worst performers among the top five vendors in the country amid an overall shrinking of demand in the world's largest smartphone market. Fifth-ranked Xiaomi, a Chinese name that experienced rapid growth just before its 2018 initial public offering, ran afoul of inventory corrections and an internal restructuring, IDC said. And "5G phones will still only comprise a very small portion of the overall market".

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