In the second quarter of 2020, the Thai smartphone market shipped 4.3 million units, increasing by 21.2% quarter-over-quarter (QoQ) but dropping 8.8% year-over-year (YoY).
The second quarter of the year usually records a quarterly increase in shipments due to seasonality and this was not dampened by the lockdown due to the Covid-19 pandemic, as OEMs quickly adapted to focus more on the online channels and ran multiple promotional campaigns during the quarter. As a result, while the sales in the retail channel were almost flat QoQ, eTailers registered a four-fold growth.
Vendors and operators were able to quickly adapt to the interruption in physical retail activities and found alternatives using various online platforms and were able to continue with their sales and marketing through official websites and eTailers while leveraging social media platforms which they used to for promotions as well as sales.
New models launched by vendors such as OPPO’s A12, Xiaomi’s Redmi Note 9 and Huawei’s Y5p were well received in the market due to their attractive price points. However, Mid-to-high end segment contributed to bulk of the growth where Samsung’s A71 and Apple’s iPhone SE (2020) gained good traction
While Thai smartphone has started to recover, IDC expects smartphone unit shipments to decline in 3Q20 due to seasonally low demand during the quarter and as economic pressures continue to weigh down on consumer demand for the next few months. However, 4Q20 will see a boost as new iPhones start shipping. Apple opened its second Apple Store in Thailand in Bangkok’s Central World.
This will help Apple to build further on the already strong iPhone momentum in the country. With retail activity getting back to normal after the lockdown was lifted, the online/offline shift is expected to get back to normal as well after online channel share peaked in 2Q20,” says Teerit Paowan, Mobile Phone Analyst, IDC Thailand.
Thailand Top-5 Brand Highlights
vivo made it to the top spot focusing on its affordable Y series with its low-end models Y11 and Y15, while its newly launched models in the mid-range Y30 and Y50 received a lukewarm response.
Samsung continued to be one of the top players in the country with its affordable Galaxy A series while the higher priced Galaxy A71 was amongst its top-selling models. It did a lot of marketing activities and launched campaigns such as “Edu Buddy”, “Super-Hot Sales”, “Butler to Go”.
OPPO lost the number 1 position in 2Q20 as sales of some of its newly launched models were dampened due to temporary price increases. OPPO maintained its focus on marketing and channel activities.
realme replaced Huawei for the fourth position. Its low-end models performed well, and it also brought X50 Pro supporting 5G. realme continued to expand in upcountry areas.
Apple maintained 5th position in the market due to the good performance of iPhone SE amid Covid-19 but the best performer was still iPhone 11.