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China smartphone demand grows 17pc

China smartphone demand grew 17 per cent last month, according to technology research company Counterpoint’s monthly Market Pulse.

It was the best-ever June in terms of sell-through for smartphones, despite the overall market having modest growth for the second quarter ending June 31.

“The competitive environment in the world’s leading smartphone market has taken an interesting turn as domestic brands have significantly ramped up their positions in the smartphone market,” says research director James Yan.

Oppo became the top-selling brand in China for the first time ever in June, surpassing Huawei, Apple and Xiaomi with a 23 per cent market share and sales volumes leapfrogging 337 per cent.

Also owned by the BBK group, Vivo also had a strong performance with the launch of a new model. Together, the sister brands captured a third of the Chinese smartphone market, up from a combined 13 per cent in the same month last year.
Meanwhile, Apple’s market share slipped to 2014 levels.

Counterpoint research director Neil Shah says Oppo adopted a simple but effective strategy – going after the offline market, which still contributes more than 70 per cent of total sales in China.

“Aggressive marketing, promotions and sponsorships, greater offline retail penetration beyond tier-two and tier-three cities, better retail margins, dealer support and, above all, innovative smartphone designs have helped Oppo drive its sales in the past 18 months.”

The brand had also focussed on design and key features such as camera, battery technology and materials.

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