Biz / Tech

Chinese smartphone market set to grow in 2024

Zhu Shenshen
China's smartphone sales are projected to grow next year, its first yearly growth since 2021 and an indication of a strong economy.
Zhu Shenshen

China's smartphone sales will grow by 3.6 percent in 2024, the market's first yearly growth since 2021 and an early indicator of economic recovery.

New gadget replacement will boost Chinese smartphone sales to 287 million next year, researcher International Data Corp said in a note. IDC attributed it to a strengthening economy and consumers' thirst for new advances in on-device artificial intelligence, big-capacity memory, and China-developed battery and screen technology.

Another analyst, TrendForce, claimed the smartphone industry is an early indicator of economic downturns and rebounds because buyers and sellers adjust their inventories in their supply chain stocks.

TrendForce anticipates a seasonal 18–23 percent increase in mobile DRAM and NAND Flash pricing in the first quarter.

A memory of 1 TB used to cost 10,000 yuan (US$1,408) or more for high-end devices. There are several models available in China now.

The 1TB Realme GT5 Pro, released in December, costs 4,299 yuan. Realme, a young brand with high-end features and low costs, has sold over 200 million units.

Chinese smartphone market set to grow in 2024
Ti Gong

Vivo is among the first brands to offer on-device AI smartphones

On-device AI is another smartphone innovation that provides more tailored local AI services. According to IDC, AI-powered phones require powerful processors and a specific design, driving smartphone replacement.

Sales of Vivo S18 models will start on Friday. It boasts AI features like file search, creating poems, text-to-image, and one-click "reducing" strangers in photos. It makes the Vivo S18 and X100 the first Chinese smartphones with localized AI.

Compared with the Vivo X100 as the flagship model, the S18 costs 2,299 yuan, making it more accessible.

The IDC report said that Chinese brands have invested in chip, screen, storage, battery, under-screen fingerprint, and materials, which will eventually give them tech and cost advantages.

Chinese smartphone market set to grow in 2024
Ti Gong

Nubia launched its first Ultra models, which featured self-developed screen and photography technologies.

ZTE-backed Nubia has pioneered under-screen fingerprint functionality for five generations. The technology enables full-size screens and simple photography.

Ni Fei, Nubia chairman, claimed screen and photography will revolutionize smartphones.

Nubia introduced its first high-end "Ultra" model, the Z60 Ultra, on Tuesday. Next week, the smartphones will cost 4,299 yuan.

IDC anticipates folding features, car integration, and satellite communication, available in current Apple and Huawei models, to trend in China next year.

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