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Apple’s iPhone dominated China last quarter despite disruptions

Apple Inc. won its biggest quarterly market share in China, outrunning Covid disruptions and a global economic slowdown.

The Cupertino, California company accounted for nearly 24% of China’s smartphone sales in the last three months of 2022, according to Counterpoint Research data. It topped all manufacturers in the quarter, becoming the second-biggest seller in the country on an annualized basis for the first time, the researchers said. The iPhone maker suffered shipment declines from the previous year, but they were smaller than those of domestic rivals like Vivo, Oppo and Xiaomi Corp.

The global smartphone market has been hurting from an economic slowdown triggered by rising inflation and interest rates. Consumer spending has plummeted, with the Chinese market recording double-digit drops at several points through the year. IDC figures released earlier this week showed all major brands taking a big step back, with retailers selling through inventory buildups rather than taking on new shipments.

Apple saw lower demand for its latest generation of iPhones than it had projected earlier this year. Its iPhone Pro models remained in high demand, but deliveries were challenged by coronavirus lockdowns and worker protests at its Zhengzhou plant in China. The company reports earnings on Feb. 2. Bloomberg

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