Apple in China

Today, it seems like Apple has been the leader in consumer electronics since forever. A conversation about handheld devices could not end without mentioning the company’s name. It has dominated the industry for quite some time now and has served to be an example or blueprint for different tech companies. One of the company’s crowning glory is the iPhone. The product has consumers raving about every release and people getting in line just to get their hands on the newest one. China is one of this US company’s biggest markets in terms of the iPhone in the past years.

Since Apple’s official launch of the iPhone in China in 2009, none of its competitors was able to challenge it. In fact, the iPhone has been the top selling smartphone in China since 2012. However, the past years have been different. There has been a decline in iPhone sales in China. Apple’s shipments to China dropped from 58.4 million units in 2015 to 44.9 million units in 2016 according to market data from IDC. This makes tech powerhouse susceptible to other competitors. However, not even the other tech giants from either Korea or Japan have a hold on the market share for smartphones in China. Samsung and Sony knocking on Apple’s door but could not control the Chinese market. In addition, the Japanese have little chance of making much of a difference in China following its recent issues about the Nanjing massacre.

This poses a question, which is controlling the Chinese market. One of the biggest markets in terms of smartphones today. The answer is very simple, it is China! Local Chinese phones have now grown popularity and love and have taken a greater piece of the pie. In fact, Chinese brands have taken about half of the total Chinese market. It seems like the people of China has started patronizing its local products when it comes to handheld devices. Also, the Chinese might be catching up with the marketing abilities of Korea and USA.

Chinese brands are now taking over the Chinese market, and slowly taking the whole world. These Chinese brands are Oppo, Huawei Technologies Corporation, Vivo, and Xiaomi Corporation. According to a report by IDC, Xiaomi is ranked fifth, then the top three is rounded up by Oppo, Huawei and Vivo being the first, second and third respectively, then the American giant Apple ranks fourth. No Japanese tech company even made it into the top five creating more speculation on the friction between Japan and China. To make it clearer, the iPhone 6s sold 12 million units in 2016. The first place Oppo’s Oppo R9, on the other hand, sold close to 17 million units according to a research by Counterpoint.

There may be a lot of reasons why this is happening to Apple. It might be possible that Apple has reached its peak in the industry. Maybe the people are just waiting for the next best smartphone that Apple might release. It may also be possible that the Chinese people favor the cheaper Android phones with almost the same aesthetics of the iPhone, then some apps that Chinese consumers use are only found in the Play Store. Nonetheless, we should not cross out Apple just yet. Apple’s marketing skills are one of the best in the business, and the company’s creativity is top notch in terms of innovating a new smartphone for the masses. Also, the company was able to create the iconic iPhone 4 which was a legend in the world of smartphones. 2017 marks the 10th anniversary of the first iPhone, meaning better things are yet to come.