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March 5, 2016

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Maturity slows gain in sales of smartphone

GROWTH in smartphone sales globally is set to fall to single digit in 2016 for the first time as China moves from a developing to a mature market, US-based research firm IDC said yesterday.

Global smartphone sales this year are expected to grow 5.7 percent to 1.5 billion units, and last year’s sales of 1.44 billion units, up 10.4 percent from 2014, were likely the last time they grew by double digits, according to IDC, or International Data Corp.

China has become a mature market like the United States and western Europe, while developing markets include India, Indonesia, the Middle East and Africa, analysts said.

“The market is very, very competitive,” said Lei Jun, CEO of Xiaomi, the market leader in China in 2015.

The saturated market environment has also hit Apple’s revenue in China, which rose 14 percent year on year in the latest quarter ending on December 26, below its nearly 100 percent explosive rise in previous quarters.



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