Samsung phones' China sales drop like a rock: from top dog to 3% market share

Samsung phones' China sales drop like a rock: from top dog to 3% market share
Samsung, like almost all non-Chinese phone makers, keeps losing market share in the land of Huawei, Oppo and Vivo, says a report by Counterpoint Technology Market Research. Samsung's smartphone shipments, which were not that great in China to begin with, fell 60 percent year-on-year, and the company moved just 3.5 million units there in Q1, bringing its market share to 3.3% from 8.6% a year or so ago.

It turns out that local brands that have big retail presence with thousands of mom-and-pop shops in remote places selling and servicing them, have the upper hand against foreign brands, or locals like Xiaomi that rely on online sales and marketing. Huawei has been the top dog in China in Q1 with with 19.7% market share, followed by Oppo with a 17.5%, and Vivo with 17.1%.

Xiaomi, for instance, focuses on glitzy announcements, flash online sales, and targets big urban markets, whereas Oppo and Vivo focused on the rural hinterland, where a billion Chinese still live, and they aren't accustomed to ordering online. Nowadays, Oppo's phones are offered in 240,000 local electronics stores throughout China, and Vivo's handsets in half of that number. Beat that, a few hundred Xiaomi stores, or tens of Apple stores! Moreover, Oppo and Vivo offer incentives for the shop owners to sell their handsets, which range from $6-$30, plus locals have somewhere to physically turn up when there is a problem with their handset.

"Samsung’s smartphones are more expensive, available only at offline agents and lack localized app services. The company needs to figure out more how to satisfy Chinese consumers’ needs," tipped Jeon Byeong-seo, head of China Economy and Finance Research. It's not only Samsung that has to figure those out, though, as Apple and the rest of the gang are also struggling in China for the same reason. As recently as 2014, Samsung was the top seller with 20% market share in China, but it looks like the big promise of the world's largest smartphone market will remain unfulfilled for most non-local brands, at least for the time being.

source: Korea Herald

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55 Comments

1. haruken

Posts: 306; Member since: Nov 06, 2013

You can tell just by the title how happy iPhonearena is by this kind of news.

20. HugoBarraCyanogenmod

Posts: 1412; Member since: Jul 06, 2014

So according to your logic, those who reject Samsung are Apple fanboy? China Android has 90 market shares, Apple did not win and phonearena happy either. You're just butthurt to see your lovely Sammy fall downhill to the 1.3 billions population market

55. audibot

Posts: 634; Member since: Jan 26, 2017

not really since every phone in china a really just a copy of samsung and apple face it hugo lol

36. umaru-chan

Posts: 358; Member since: Apr 27, 2017

I can tell how salty samsung fanboys/girls are just by the number of green thumbs you got for your comment. What I don't understand is what is the exact reason for sammy fanboys/girls keep coming to this site despite claiming that this is the most apple biased site in the internet. Are they masochist? Or they think it is their noble duty to protect their fav brand from the clutches of evil press like this 'apple biased site'? whatever it is I'd love to hear it. Sissy246, ibend,dazed1,podrick, mreveryphone, NoToFanboy care to comment.

54. audibot

Posts: 634; Member since: Jan 26, 2017

f**k china all they do is copy every phone and rebrand/rename it

2. Podrick

Posts: 1285; Member since: Aug 19, 2015

Techie's blood pressure just got high. Mxy, cnour and the likes are having an orgasm.

6. byazatt

Posts: 316; Member since: Oct 26, 2012

Haha, got that right. Plus 1

16. NoToFanboys

Posts: 3231; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

Don't forget piyath.

23. phonearenarocks

Posts: 606; Member since: Mar 26, 2015

And Kiko007 too

32. kiko007

Posts: 7493; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

Please stop namedropping me in your troll Olympics. I don't give two shots about how well, how meh, or how s**t Samsung is doing in China. Literally not one f**k given.

38. omnitech

Posts: 1131; Member since: Sep 28, 2016

Lol are you for real?! You have more white liquid from Tim Cook on your face than anyone else here bro. The first stage is denial.

40. kiko007

Posts: 7493; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

Liking Apple products !=Giving a damn about Samsung

48. phonearenarocks

Posts: 606; Member since: Mar 26, 2015

I don't troll anyone. It is your blind support for Apple that I dislike greatly. Look at my "member since date" and "number of posts" and compare it with yours. You've got to change man! Please don't keep posting in every article about Apple -> in a bid to defend it in every comment where it is criticized. Don't make people ignore you. I know tens of folks who are already ignored by everyone out here. I find your posts drifting in that direction once in a while. You might say that you'll give a damn about what anybody thinks but you've got to maintain the respect from most people in the society which is quite hard but you don't know when a need could arise and many might be of great help to you. None of this is boring moral science but is a fact.

53. AlikMalix unregistered

If you gonna make a list of Apple fanboys, you got to list me as well - I mean look at my avatar. I'm saddened, you guys never include me I your stupid lists.

3. Spyro

Posts: 334; Member since: Mar 29, 2017

Not surprised knowing people from China only cares about status and God knows how a guy can get a 5s there for a cheap price.

8. RebelwithoutaClue unregistered

In the article it says: It's not only Samsung that has to figure those out, though, as Apple and the rest of the gang are also struggling in China for the same reason

4. joey_sfb

Posts: 6794; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

Actually the competition offer the same or more value for less money. Take my Xiaomi for example, its half the price with the same spec and less bloatware. XiaoMi bloat are developed by themselves and most are not half bad. Like malware scanner, app permission manager or FM radio.

5. Spyro

Posts: 334; Member since: Mar 29, 2017

Still don't see an S8 killer in any of them and I bet we'll be seeing no headphone jacks in their flagships soon.

9. joey_sfb

Posts: 6794; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

You forgot about Xiaomi Mi Mix. That's model is targeting the same flagship consumers. I want one but its always out of stock. Pricey too!

18. Guaire

Posts: 886; Member since: Oct 15, 2014

Though that's true for Xiaomi and maybe Honor sub-brand of Huawei examples, especially Oppo and Vivo handsets are not cheap. For example Samsung C9 Pro is slightly cheaper than Vivo X9 Plus and IMO spec by spec it's slightly but clearly superior. If I remember right, Samsung C line was exclusive to online channels. http://www.gsmarena.com/compare.php3?idPhone1=8434&idPhone2=8347 http://item.jd.com/3909950.html http://item.jd.com/10941082985.html

22. HugoBarraCyanogenmod

Posts: 1412; Member since: Jul 06, 2014

China is the only country who value competition and reject duopoly market. Unlike in US people keep sheeping Apple and Samsung

24. PhoneCritic

Posts: 1354; Member since: Oct 05, 2011

Not really. With the Government there clearly in favor and support of the locals; there was no way foreign brands could ever get a solid foot hold for long. The communist party made sure of that. you will never see a Google apps store nor Chrome, Facebook, Twitter etc.. all are fire walled or heavily censored if at all present. Only local home grown apps and companies are favored. This is the lessons that tech companies as Cisco, Aruba, HP etc learned when they all rushed to China for cheap labor hoping they could make huge profits back here in the states. Well the party lasted only for so long as the Chinese tech companies imitated and created similar tech for much cheaper and took back their market. Same will happen to Ford, GM and Chrysler ( And when these foreign companies complained or sued the locals for copyright infringement the courts always came down on the side of the locals no questions asked) - The Chinese Government controlled everything so No no real competition

7. byazatt

Posts: 316; Member since: Oct 26, 2012

It all comes down to understanding the target market and giving what the customers want. You may be selling the best hardware married to the best software. But if you do it wrong, another guy packaging trash will thrash you.

10. piyath

Posts: 2445; Member since: Mar 23, 2012

Samsung is very close to it's dooms day. They have no "Next Big Thing" anymore to brag about.....lol All they can do is keep on curving their glass and hope for the best.

12. DRS1977

Posts: 679; Member since: May 27, 2015

Yet they have more money than you can dream of. You are poor.

17. AmashAziz

Posts: 2923; Member since: Jun 30, 2014

Keep on curving their glass!!.......HAHAHAHA

19. sissy246

Posts: 7111; Member since: Mar 04, 2015

And another dumb comment by a dumbazz.

52. ColinW

Posts: 412; Member since: Jun 04, 2014

If it is very close to its doomsday how is it still sells many more phones than any other??????

11. nebula

Posts: 1009; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

China market is very different. Think of rich and super saturated market, people will do everything in they best ability to knock off they feet behemoths like Samsung. They will penetrate every possible corner and use every possible opportunity to out sell even a single Samsung phone. Samsung is too big to react and adjust they strategy, they are naturally squeezed out by a fierce competition.

21. whatev

Posts: 2260; Member since: Oct 28, 2015

Chinese companies only compete with prices, many people there really want to buy an iPhone or a galaxy but those are extremely pricey there, like 200€ more for 32gb iPhone for example (I guess galaxies are the same), as long as this pricing policy is kept there's no chance for foreign companies in China in the foreseeable future, the government is too protective of domestic brands and won't give a chance to others to prosper on that market, the sad thing is that Chinese people will miss really good products just because the way their government acts towards other companies

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