Apple’s iPhone sales plummeted 19% in March quarter, per Counterpoint data

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Apple’s iPhone sales plummeted 19% in March quarter, per Counterpoint data
Credit: © Reuters.

According to Counterpoint Research, Apple’s (AAPL) iPhone sales in China plummeted by 19% during the March quarter, marking the device's poorest performance in the region since the onset of Covid around 2020.

This decline resulted in Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL ) dropping to third place in the competitive Chinese market, aligning closely with Huawei Technologies. Despite the overall market growing by about 1.5%, local brands such as Honor Device and Xiaomi Corp. were the primary drivers of this growth.

This downturn in iPhone sales is particularly notable given that the first quarter is traditionally a time of increased consumption in China due to the Lunar New Year celebrations.

In stark contrast, Huawei's sales surged by nearly 70%, highlighting its strong recovery in the premium smartphone segment—a market segment that Apple once dominated.

Additional data from Counterpoint revealed that global iPhone shipments decreased by almost 10% in the first three months of 2024, according to earlier analysis from IDC, raising concerns about the company’s ongoing growth prospects, especially as the company approaches its earnings report on May 2.

Counterpoint had initially estimated a steeper 24% drop in iPhone sales in China for the first six weeks of 2024.

In response to waning demand, Apple implemented uncommon discounts in January on its latest devices to boost sales. Its retail partners in China also offered significant discounts, with some prices cut by as much as $180.

“Apple’s sales were subdued during the quarter as Huawei’s comeback has directly impacted Apple in the premium segment,” said analysts.

“Besides, the replacement demand for Apple has been slightly subdued compared to previous years,” they added.

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