Sun, Sep 10, 2017 - Page 15 News List

One problem for Apple’s iPhone is jaded Chinese consumers

Local smartphone brands are tailoring their devices to suit Chinese consumers’ needs and releasing new products at much faster rates than the US-based tech giant

By Gao Yuan  /  Bloomberg

The company’s combined revenue in Taiwan, Hong Kong and China fell 10 percent in the latest quarter — the only region to experience a year-on-year decline.

While revenue was little changed in China, Counterpoint Research has put the iPhone’s share of the over-US$600 device market at 80 percent and sales are growing in urban areas.

Xiaomi, showing signs of bouncing back from its worst shipment declines in its seven-year history, is to unveil the Mi MIX 2 a day before Apple’s event.

The new phone, a second-generation to a model developed with designer Philippe Starck featuring a ceramic body and bezelless screen, takes it deeper into Apple’s high-end territory.

Huawei — a company that declared its intention of supplanting Apple and Samsung Electronics Co at the top of the mobile food chain — is to debut its full-screened Mate 10 next month.

The last iteration of its flagship sported cameras designed with Leica Camera AG; this one is expected to employ an in-house developed multicore Kirin 970 processor.

“The dual-camera technology, which was first introduced by Huawei, is now a must-have feature adopted by major players across the globe,” chief executive officer Guo Ping (郭平) told Bloomberg Television. “Apple is an outstanding company that we respect, but Huawei also has a lot of innovations.”

Even Vivo — the smallest player of the group, is teasing the silhouette of a new thin-bezel device, presaging an imminent release, though it declined to comment on details.

The top-shelf iPhone’s rumored US$1,000-plus price tag might end up pushing Chinese iOS fans toward local alternatives, because even well-heeled buyers are price-sensitive, Canalys analyst Jia Mo said.

“Not every high-end user in China [is] willing to accept a price tag above 8,000 yuan. Actually there are many who can’t afford it,” he said.

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