For the first time since 2012, the Apple iPhone failed to grab the title of top selling smartphone in China. The Oppo R9 – the flagship smartphone of the Chinese brand Oppo Electronics – came first, selling close to 17 million units and capturing 4 percent market share.
CNBC reports that a Counterpoint Research market report put the Chinese brand before Apple in the race for leadership. The iPhone 6s sold 12 million units in 2016 or around 2 percent of all phones sold in China. Oppo is a fast-growing smartphone brand, selling high-spec low-priced devices in regular stores.
Apple has been struggling in China for the last few quarters. In the three months to September 24, 2016, Greater China revenue fell 30 percent year-on-year. In the mid-tier price range, Oppo and Vivo are king. Huawei has sqeezed Apple into the higher end of the market by Huawei. Analysts said the next iPhone – the iPhone 8 – will be the key to unlocking growth in China.
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