Apple’s rank in China’s smartphone market, which is set to become the world’s largest this year, fell to No.6 in the third quarter as it faced tough competition from local Chinese brands. China is seeing competition intensifying in its smartphone sector, with global and homegrown vendors trying to outgun one another in terms of price and features. Research firm IDC said Apple saw its third-quarter ranking by market share fall two notches from its position in the second quarter. Its market share by shipments was under 10 percent in the third quarter, when China’s smartphone shipments hit a record high, at more than 60 million units …
Galaxy-maker Samsung, the world’s No.2 PC maker Lenovo and global No.2 telecom equipment maker Huawei retained the top two and No.5 spots, respectively. Chinese brand Coolpad made a three-spot leap to No.3 in the country, but ZTE dropped one place to No.4 in the July-September period. The research firm did not give the market share numbers of any company except Apple. Analysts expect a rebound with the launch of the iPhone 5 in China next week. IDC’s report comes a day after Apple’s shares fell more than 6 percent on the Nasdaq, logging its biggest single-day loss in four years and losing $35 billion of its value, on concerns about rivals gaining ground in the mobile devices market.
The communist nation now has more than one billion mobile phone subscribers though less than a fifth are 3G subscribers. Local mobile carriers have been doling out generous handset subsidies to try to attract higher-end users keen on online gaming and social networking. Chinese vendors are also offering smartphones in the sub-1,000 yuan (US$160) category. Chinese vendors are having strong performance in their home market, showing that it is not impossible for Chinese vendors to surpass international vendors. Price continues to be king and Chinese consumers are starting to show a lack of interest in Apple products. The Cupertino could be in trouble.
SOURCE: IDC via REUTERS