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Smartphone market worsening, but iPhone market share set for all-time high – IDC

Smartphone market worsening, but iPhone market share set for all-time high – IDC

Smartphone market worsening | iPhone 15 Pro render in black

Market intelligence company IDC says that the global smartphone market is worsening, and that the decline in shipments this year will be even lower than previously expected.

However, it says that Apple will buck the trend in a dramatic fashion, predicting that iPhone market share will reach an all-time high this year …

Global smartphone market worsening

Ask any of the big market intelligence companies about the global smartphone market, and you’ll get the same gloomy answers. Both Counterpoint and IDC, for example, agree that 2023 will see the lowest level of smartphone shipments in a decade.

The pandemic and a tough economy added to the challenges faced by the industry, but it has also been battling the simple fact that smartphone tech hit a plateau, and the average consumer could no longer see a reason to upgrade every one to two years. The average person now upgrades their smartphone every three to four years.

The long-term trend has been downward since 2017, mostly due to the fact that, well, new smartphones haven’t been very exciting for many years. Development has plateaued, and most consumers now hold onto their phones for 3-4 years rather than 1-2 years.

IDC agrees with the earlier Counterpoint forecast.

Worldwide smartphone shipments are forecast to decline 4.7% year over year in 2023 to 1.15 billion units, the lowest volume in a decade […] This is a downward revision from IDC’s previous forecast of -3.2%, driven by a weaker economic outlook and ongoing inflation, which has dampened consumer demand and lengthened refresh cycles.

However, says the firm, the iPhone is set to buck the trend, achieving year-on-year growth even as the rest of the market continues its decline.

IDC expects iOS shipments to see 1.1% growth in 2023 to reach an all-time high share of 19.9% as iOS continues to remain more resilient to macro challenges than Android, which is forecast to decline 6.0% this year […]

“During a time when the entire market is struggling, it speaks volumes to once again see Apple going the opposite direction,” said Ryan Reith, group vice president, Mobility and Consumer Device Trackers at IDC.

The company says Apple’s prospects have been assisted by trade-in deals and the growth in buy-now, pay-later schemes like Apple Pay Later.

But other companies offer equivalent programs, so Apple is continuing to find ways to persuade iPhone owners to upgrade, and Android owners to switch.

The iPhone 15 Pro Max is expected to lead the way when Apple unveils this year’s line-up on September 12 – though some buyers may end up waiting a while to take delivery of theirs.

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