In the last few years, the local smartphone makers like Oppo, Vivo, Xiaomi and Huawei have taken over the smartphone market in China. China, which is the largest smartphone market in the world, has many domestic manufacturers of smartphones and other devices, which is why there is considerably more competition in China than in any other country.
Apple cannot beat Oppo and Vivo in China: Founder of Oppo and Vivo
Both Oppo and Vivo, which are subsidiaries of BBK Electronics, overthrew the iPhone (of Apple) during 2016 in terms of unit sales in China. Last week, Duan Yongping, the founder of Oppo and Vivo said in an interview that the Cupertino-based iPhone maker could not beat them in China even when they have flaws. In the interview, which was exclusively with tech site Bloomberg, the founder disclosed how Oppo and Vivo received more sales than Apple Inc. in China.
Yongping said “They’re maybe too stubborn sometimes. They made a lot of great things, like their operating system, but we surpass them in other areas.” However, currently it is too early to determine if the Oppo and Vivo brands will continue having power because there are other domestic rivals as well like Xiaomi, Huawei, etc.
Also, we think the only reason why the two brands are able to surpass the tech giant in China is because the Silicon Valley giant is allowing them to. The companies may be rising rapidly but we cannot ignore the fact that just half a decade ago, the two companies had just a 3% share in the China-based smartphone market. Xiaomi as well as Lenovo and Huawei were the top contenders in China in 2014 and at the time, Oppo and Vivo were running very slowly.
Reason why Oppo and Vivo are growing rapidly – Apple
Since 2015, the sales of both Oppo and Vivo brands have increased due to their investments in building a massive retail presence, specifically in smaller cities and areas. The two companies understand that there are a lot of first-time buyers in smaller markets and more opportunities in growth. In 2016, both the brands hit their stride.
The combined shipment for Oppo as well as Vivo more than doubled in China to almost 150 million units. Oppo led the market with a 16.8% shipment share for the complete year while Vivo stood in third place with a 14.8% market share. According to Duan Yongping, the success of the two brands is largely because they provide high-end features at a reasonable price. He is right, of course, but this is something that the tech giant already knows. The Silicon Valley giant wants to maximize its earnings, which is why it is not reducing its device’s prices. If it does so, it would be a win-win for Apple Inc. in China and a huge loss for Oppo and Vivo brands.