Last year was marked by significant growth in the sale of smartwatches, on the one hand, and folding phones, on the other. The latter, in fact, sold three times more than in 2020. Now that we are fully into March, we already know some data on how this 2022 has started when it comes to smartphone sales.
According to the latest report from Counterpoint Research, corresponding to the month of January, the first month of the year left us a very striking fact: For the first time, sales of 5G handsets have surpassed those of 4G phones. This triumph corresponds to the expansion of next-generation networks that is taking place in much of China, North America and Western Europe. Including, of course, Spain.
The surprise of 5G to 4G
According to data from Counterpoint Research, global sales of phones with 5G support reached 51% globally in January 2022, surpassing the penetration of 4G phones for the first time. The main drivers of this growth were China, with a percentage of 5G sales of 84% in the first month of the year, North America and Western Europe, with 73 and 76%, respectively.
Global 5G and 4G mobile penetration | Graphic: Counterpoint
This increase in the penetration of 5G mobiles has also contributed to the launch of 5G phones at competitive prices. Here it is worth noting the supply of affordable 5G chips by MediaTek and Qualcomm, which has led to the appearance of 5G Android phones first in the mid-price segment (between $250 and $400) and now even in the $150 price range. and 250 dollars.
Affordable 5G chips from MediaTek and Qualcomm have sparked the emergence of 5G Android phones in lower price segments
If we look at regions and manufacturers, Apple dominates this segment in North America and Western Europe with a sales share of more than 50 and 30%, respectively. In fact, Counterpoint ensures that the launch of the first 5G iPhones in October 2020, the iPhone 12, was accompanied by a large increase in sales of 5G phones in both regions.
Asia-Pacific, the Middle East and Latin America continue to be dominated by 4G, but the arrival of new 5G models with a price less than 150 dollars it can be decisive for 5G penetration to increase. According to Counterpoint, the entry-level 5G SoC is currently priced above $20, but when it drops below that barrier, we’ll see a lot more 5G phones in the budget segment.
More information | CounterpointResearch