Global shipments of Smartphone has dropped in first quarter, expecting worse in the second quarter



The use of Smartphone was becoming very popular among the users all over the world across all the countries. A huge surge in demand from 2015 till 2020 led to huge increase in the number of Smartphone users all over the world. From the end of 2018, sales started going downward due to reasons more than one. First, there was market saturation as most people already were having a Smartphone and secondly, an economic recession was slowly gripping the world economy. Hence from the last quarter of 2018 till first quarter of 2019, there was a decrease in the number of Smartphone shipments to various countries of the world. However, in the third and fourth quarter of 2019, the industry saw a growth in the shipment of Smartphone to different countries. The Smartphone manufacturers were happy about the increase in demand of Smartphone in the market for second time. All the big brands were doing great business and the industry was quite optimistic about future growth of the industry.

It was at this time that the human population came under attack from the virus named Covid 19. As different states of various countries started enforcing lockdown in one part of the country to another, the demand for Smartphone started going down and there was a massive fall in the shipment of Smartphone in the world. 

With the lockdown being enforced, all sports competitions were also cancelled. As a result, there is a complete shutdown in the sports betting industry with no movement found even in the month of March madness. Smartphone played a major role in the growth of sports betting industry. With no sporting event being seen in the near future, sports betting industry is almost closed. Sports betting were one of the reasons for increase in demand of the sales of Smartphone. Many online betting sites were formed and people used to bet through them with the help of their Smartphone. In that sense, Smartphone played a major role in the growth of the sports betting industry and vice versa.

Industry reports say that shipments of Smartphone dropped globally from 31.39 crore units in the first quarter of 2019 to 27.25 crore units in the first quarter of the year 2020. This clearly shows a decline of 13 per cent on year on year basis. Due to closing of the movement of ships and air cargo the total number of units shipped also declined to a great extent on a year to year basis. 

Samsung has been found to be the market leader among all the leading and reputed brands. In the first quarter of 2019, Samsung shipped 71.5 million units while in the first quarter of 2020, they shipped around 59 million units. The market share of Samsung has been found to be around 22% and it is the highest among all the brands. The second in line is Huawei who shipped around 49 million units in the first quarter of 2020 against 59 million units in the first quarter of 2019. Huawei has got the second leading position in the market with a market share of 18% in the two consecutive years. The interesting fact is that almost half of their shipments were shipped to China and rest to other countries of the world.

Surprisingly, with a market share of 13%, Apple is in the third position. Apple shipped 40 million units in the first quarter of the year 2019 which fell down to 37 million units in the first quarter of 2020. 

During the first half of January and February, when corona virus was mainly a Chinese phenomenon, Smartphone manufacturers were worried about how to meet the global demand as markets and factories in China were closed. But unfortunately, from the month of March, it was observed that corona virus spread to different countries and with the closure of the sports betting industry, the demand for Smartphone went down further across the globe.

Industry experts are of the opinion that the worst phase of the Smartphone industry is not yet over. Corona virus has spread further during the second quarter of 2020 creating a further plunge in demand of Smartphone. The second quarter of 2020 will see the greatest impact of corona virus impact on the Smartphone industry and the mettle of the industry will be tested. The time will really be difficult for the offline retailers. Since most of the offline retailers have to shut down their shops for months, they will be without any business for almost the second quarter of the year 2020. In some cases, the situation has become so worse that many of the offline retailers may need Government support for survival.

To help the offline retailers come out of this crisis, Samsung has brought on platform online around 20,000 retailers in India who are unable to open their shop during the lockdown period. To execute the deals, Samsung has done a partnership with Benow, a reputed platform offering merchant payment solutions.  

In this process, Samsung will share the information of the dealer with Benow, after which the dealer will have to download the Benow app. After the download, the dealer can show all the Smartphone he has for sale and he will have to generate a link. Now at the next step, the dealer can advertise this link in his locality through SMS or Whatsapp or Cable television. If any willing customer wants to buy a particular model, he or she will have to make a payment through Benow and the dealer will have to deliver the Smartphone to the local address after receiving the payment. When the process was announced, the dealers find it to be very attractive and around 20,000 dealers signed with the system as they were going through difficult times.

In addition to all these, Samsung is also offering major discount on its variety of models of Smartphone. The company is desperately trying to retain some sales even if the lockdown continues further for few more months.