Coronavirus outbreak: Global smartphone shipments witness biggest decline in history

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Published: March 23, 2020 11:45:40 AM

In the wake of novel coronavirus, many shipments and deliveries have been halted across the globe.

Amazon Apple Days Sale heavy discounts available on iPhone X, iPhone 11 seriesIt is difficult to project when the market will start growing.

In the wake of novel coronavirus, many shipments and deliveries have been halted across the globe. As a result, the smartphone market witnessed a decline of 38 per cent year-on-year in its shipments in February 2020. The decline, driven by coronavirus outbreak, can be marked as the steepest in the history, a report by Strategy Analytics said. The global smartphone shipments were reported at 61.8 million units last month as compared to 99.2 million units shipped in February 2019, the report said.

As the coronavirus extended beyond China, the demand for smartphones collapsed big time, especially in Asia, therefore dragging down the shipments across continents as well. According to the report, there were some factories in Asia that were not able to manufacture smartphones. Moreover, consumers too were not able to visit the retail stores or deferred buying new devices, further pulling the sales of smartphones on the lower side.

While there have been reports that production of smartphones is likely to increase in China, it is difficult to project when the market will start growing. The report highlighted that even if production goes up, people are unlikely to go out for purchases at a time when cities are on a lockdown or population is advised to home-quarantine. Also, many people still have to worry about their paycheck as many are not able to work. This makes smartphones a luxury or an item which is quite down on priority list, the report added.

Meanwhile, stores have also been shut amid quarantine. Apple has closed all of its outlets in China. AT&T also announced the closure of 40 per cent of its corporate-owned stores in order to curb the outspread of the novel Coronavirus. Even in March, the shipments are pegged to remain weak. The report asserted that the sales are expected to go the downward spiral in March too given that the United States also started quarantine this month, which was not the case last month.

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