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Coronavirus effect: Smartphone sales drop by 50% in Q1 2020

Smartphone manufacturing in China has taken a big toll with most factories remaining shut or open only partially.

  • Updated: February 11, 2020 4:10 PM IST
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China is taking a big hit due to the coronavirus right now. And it’s not just China, but over 20 other countries have caught the virus and are taking measure to prevent the virus from spreading. That being said, China itself, has largely come to a halt in terms of trade. In markets like that of smartphones, the country has had a huge problem. Also Read - PUBG German PGS esport event postponed due to coronavirus fears

China is home to some pretty big brands in the tech sector. This includes names like Xiaomi, Huawei, Oppo, OnePlus and Vivo. The fact that the country is practically in lockdown currently means all these brands cannot launch their new smartphones. It also means that the manufacturing and assembly of a lot of phones have since gone down. Now, reports state that smartphone sales in the first quarter of the year have fallen by as much as 50 percent compared to last year. Also Read - MWC 2020: Who is attending and who is not due to Coronavirus outbreak

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The novel coronavirus outbreak has claimed over 900 lives and as crippled China’s manufacturing hands. As a result, top smartphone brands like Huawei have taken a direct hit in sales numbers. The planned launches are either being cancelled or delayed. Also Read - Amazon is also skipping MWC over Coronavirus concerns

“Vendors’ planned product launches will be cancelled or delayed, given that large public events are not allowed in China,” said research firm Canalys in a note last week. It added that “it will take time for vendors to change their product launch roadmaps in China, which is likely to dampen 5G shipments.”

Some brands will get through the manufacturing problem though, but not as efficiently. Oppo told Reuters that while the virus will impact its operations at local factories, “manufacturing capacity can be guaranteed effectively” thanks to the brand’s manufacturing plants overseas. “The delays in reopening factories and the labour return time will not only affect shipments to stores, but it will also affect the product launch times in the mid- and long-term,” Will Wong, an IDC analyst, said.

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  • Published Date: February 11, 2020 4:05 PM IST
  • Updated Date: February 11, 2020 4:10 PM IST



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