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Global Smartphone Sales Collapse – With Worse To Come

SAN FRANCISCO: Global smartphones sales have collapsed in their biggest fall since the invention of the device, according to research firm Strategy Analytics. It says global shipments in February fell by 38 percent year-on-year, due to Covid 19 as many Asian factories were unable to manufacture smartphones.

Strategy Analytics said Asian consumers were also unable or unwilling to visit retail stores and buy new devices.

The report said smartphone shipments dropped to 61.8 million in February 2020, from 99.2 million a year earlier.

The situation wasn’t helped by the cancellation of Barcelona’s Mobile World Congress, where many new smartphone models are unveiled for the first time.

Samsung, which revealed its latest flagship S20 phones in February, has reportedly slow initial sales of the devices. Apple has warned it will miss its profit forecasts and says that worldwide iPhone supply would be constrained.

“February 2020 saw the biggest-ever fall in the history of the worldwide smartphone market,” said Neil Mawston, executive director at Strategy Analytics. 

He added: “Supply and demand of smartphones plunged in China, slumped across Asia, and slowed in the rest of the world. It is a period the smartphone industry will want to forget.”

The research company said that it expects smartphone shipments to continue to struggle throughout what’s left of March, now that the virus has spread through Europe and into the US, locking down hundreds of millions of potential customers.

The upside for the consumer is that retailers may decide to offer “generous” discounts on bundles to bolster sales, Strategy Analytics said.

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