Market Pulse || Nov 2016 Edition-Analysis of October Sales

Today we published our analysis of the mobile device sales during the month of October 2016. We also review the Singles’ Day event.

Our key takeaways are as follows:

  • October was a month of contrasts. The iPhone 7 ramped up sales while Samsung ramped down the ill-fated Note 7. However while Samsung suffered, it didn’t suffer as much as expected due to customers (consumers and channel partners) having few alternatives in, for example, the US. Meanwhile Apple could have done better were it not for shortages of some key SKUs.
  • Throughout it all, the two brands that have continued to surprise to the upside are OPPO and vivo. The two Chinese brands know how to market and distribute better than anyone else in both China and India right now and it’s working well for them. OPPO and vivo understood how to get channels to work hard for them. They also understand how to build brands and are doing so effectively in the China market and selected other Asian markets. They haven’t yet ventured into deeper international waters though.
  • China’s Singles’ Day – although it has spread far from China’s shores now – was another success with volumes up year on year, though less strongly than in 2015. Alibaba was the biggest beneficiary with over $17Bn in gross merchandise value realized. In terms of brands, Apple led in value while Xiaomi and Huawei split the prize for volume sales.
  • Sell-in was strong in October due to stocking for upcoming festivals season growing 1-3% compared to last month. US and Europe were rising as it gets nearer to the holiday season and the peak of the year. India grew well following the Diwali festivals seasons. Korea recovered from the Note 7 ban and sell-through jumped in October as operators restarted promotions and Apple iPhone 7 sales started.

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