Apple’s iPhone Shipments in China Rebound With 12 Percent Surge in March After Price Cuts

Apple’s iPhone shipments in China increased by 12 percent in March after the company and its retailers reduced prices, according to data from a research firm affiliated the Chinese government.

Shipments of foreign-branded phones in China increased by 12 percent in March to 3.75 million units from 3.35 million a year earlier, data from the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology (CAICT) published on Wednesday showed.

Although the data did not explicitly mention Apple, the company is the dominant foreign phone maker in China’s smartphone-dominated market. This suggests that the increase in foreign-branded phone shipments can be attributed to Apple’s performance.

Apple’s sales surge in March followed a ramped-up discounting effort led by the company and third-party sellers in the run-up to the month, with some iPhone 15 models offered at discounts of as much as 10 percent.

The price cuts appear to have stimulated demand and contributed to the company’s growth in the Chinese market. This represents a significant turnaround from the first two months of 2024, when Apple experienced a 37 percent slump in sales, according to Reuters calculations based on the CAICT data.

During the first quarter of this year, Apple’s smartphone shipments in China tumbled 19 percent, marking their worst performance since 2020, according to research firm Counterpoint. The primary reason for Apple’s sales slump was the launch and successful sales of a high-end smartphone by Huawei in August of the previous year.

Apple’s recorded sales of $16.37 billion (roughly Rs. 1,36,693 crore) for the fiscal second quarter that ended March 30 in the Greater China region, down 8.1 percent but above analyst expectations of $15.59 billion (roughly Rs. 1,30,180 crore), data from Visible Alpha showed.

© Thomson Reuters 2024

Apple launched the iPad Pro (2022) and the iPad (2022) alongside the new Apple TV this week. We discuss the company’s latest products, along with our review of the iPhone 14 Pro on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Spotify, Gaana, JioSaavn, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.

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