Smartphone sales plunged in 2022, to the lowest for (a very) long time!

Alexander Schmid

January 28, 2023 at 11:00 a.m.


Smartphone Google Pixel © © Daniel Romero/Unsplash

© Daniel Romero/Unsplash

Catastrophic last quarter, very complicated whole year, 2022 was not very nice with the manufacturers of smartphones.

We recently reported to you that PC sales are collapsing, but it also seems that smartphone sales are not doing much better.

Historic drop in sales in 2022

According to the analysis firm IDC, 300.3 million mobiles were sold in the fourth quarter of 2022, a decrease of 18.3% compared to the same period the previous year. This is the largest one-quarter drop recorded by IDC in this market.

Nabila Popal, research director at IDC, explains that this is the first time that smartphone sales during a fourth quarter (Christmas) are weaker than during a third quarter. Over the year, the firm notes a drop of 11.3% compared to the figures for 2021. 1.21 billion smartphones were shipped in 2022, the lowest total since 2013.

Even Apple, so far rather spared by this phenomenon, experienced a setback at the end of last year (-14.9%). The firm experienced supply difficulties on its production lines in China. It still gains one point of market share (24.1%) over its competitors, who are suffering even more severely from the situation.

No brand is spared

Samsung and OPPO recorded a decrease in sales of 15.6% and 15.9% respectively in the fourth quarter of 2022. Vivo is at -18.9% and the big loser is Xiaomi, which is plummeting to -26.3%.

smartphone sales Q4 2022 © IDC


Samsung is second in the ranking (19.4% market share) behind Apple, which passes it each last quarter thanks to the launch of new iPhones and the holiday season. Xiaomi closes the podium with 11% of PDM, followed by OPPO (8.4%) and vivo (7.6%).

The reasons given by IDC to explain this trend are “significantly reduced consumer demand, inflation and economic uncertainty”. The return to growth is threatened for 2023, but manufacturers and distributors could offer many promotional offers to rekindle consumer interest.

Source : IDC

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