Smartphone shipments expected to grow by 6% despite the global chip shortage

    According to the latest report from Counterpoint Research, the global smartphone shipments are expected to grow by 6% annually to 1.41 billion units in 2021, down from the earlier forecast of 9% annual growth and 1.45 billion shipments. And this is despite being suffering from the ongoing semiconductor shortage.

    “The smartphone industry was set for a strong rebound this year after COVID-19 had hit the market hard in 2020. Smartphone vendors placed large component orders from the end of last year, and consumer demand coming from delayed replacement purchases buoyed the market in the first quarter.”

    Some of the smartphone OEMs and vendors have reported that only 80% of their requested volumes on key components during Q2 2021, and they also expect to receive only 70% of their requests.

    “Counterpoint Research believes 90% of the industry is affected and this will impact the second half forecast for 2021. The semiconductor shortage seems to affect all brands in the ecosystems. Samsung, Oppo, Xiaomi have all been affected and we are lowering our forecasts. But Apple seems to be the most resilient and least affected by the AP shortage situation.”

    The smartphone industry has managed to garner lots of profits despite the shortages of components like DDIs and PMICs through advanced planning and placing of orders. And now, despite foundries running at full capacity for “several quarters”, the smartphone industry is being affected, it added.

    “Components that were once fully stored in the warehouse are bottoming and new components are not coming as requested. AP vendors like Qualcomm and Mediatek rely on these foundries and manufacturing problems result in fewer processors supplied which in turn affects smartphone OEMs.”


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