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More than 60 million smartphone shipments in China for Q3

Jack Loo | Dec. 11, 2012
Android platform leads the market, while Linux phones create niche segment

Smartphone shipments in China broke past the 60 million unit mark in the third quarter of this year, three times more than PC shipments in the same quarter, according to the IDC Asia/Pacific Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker.

Data from the IDC report also indicate that smartphones shipped to the PRC grew 38 percent quarter-on-quarter, far outpacing the 9 percent quarter-on-quarter growth of the total mobile phone market.

"Vendors ramped up shipments and aggressively launched new models to meet consumer demand during the Q3 summer school vacation and the National Day holiday period," said James Yan, senior market analyst for Computing Systems Research at IDC China.

"A new wave of sub-US$150 smartphones with upgraded specifications, such as a 4-inch+ screen size and dual-core application processors, were especially popular," added Yan.

The Android platform extended its dominance of the PRC smartphone market, though new iOS and Windows Phone 8 handsets lined-up for Q4 are expected to spice things up, observed IDC analysts.

Linux-based smartphones found a niche segment through low-cost handsets based on homegrown variant Aliyun OS. Aliyun OS's integration with Alibaba's e-commerce and cloud services seem sufficient for it to sustain a niche segment, said IDC analysts.

Data from the Tracker indicate that the China-based smartphone vendors are growing stronger than before. "Chinese vendors Coolpad, Lenovo and ZTE made it to the APEJ top five vendors on strong performance in their home market, showing that it is not impossible for Chinese vendors to surpass international vendors," said Wong Teck-zhung, senior market analyst for Client Devices at IDC Asia/Pacific.

But for Apple, it posted an underwhelming performance for the quarter. The technology giant's China shipments declined this quarter, sending it down two spots to six with less than 10 percent market share, though a rebound is expected with the iPhone 5 slated for a mid-December launch, according to IDC analysts.


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