Honor sees gains as China smartphone sales fall

(Source: Reuters )

Former Huawei unit Honor posted the fastest growth in China’s smartphone market in the first quarter, even as overall handset sales fell 14 per cent year-on-year to levels close to those seen in the pandemic-ravaged first quarter of 2020.

Android handset brands Vivo and Oppo, both under the privately owned BBK Electronics, claimed the largest share of first quarter sales, with 19.7 per cent and 18 per cent of the market respectively, research firm Counterpoint Research said.

Apple, which was China’s top-selling vendor in the previous quarter for the first time in six years thanks to the release of the iPhone 13, was the third-largest seller in Q1, claiming 17.9 per cent of the market.

Honor made the biggest gains in Q1, taking the fourth biggest slice of sales with 16.9 per cent, with sales up 15.5 per cent on the previous quarter. Huawei Technologies sold its Honor unit in December 2020 to a consortium of agents and dealers as US sanctions crippled the parent’s smartphone sales.

Huawei, once China’s best selling brand, held 6.2 per cent of the market in the first quarter.

Chinese retail sales lagged in the key coastal economic regions of Guangdong and Jiangsu in the first quarter, with areas hit by Covid-19 outbreaks also showing particular weakness, regional data showed.

  • Reporting by David Kirton; Editing by Richard Pullin, of Reuters.

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