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Thailand’s Smartphone Market Decreased 2.2% YoY in 3Q21 Amid Supply Shortages and Higher Selling Prices

BANGKOK, December 8, 2021 – According to the International Data Corporation ’s (IDC) Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, Thailand’s smartphone shipments reached 4.3 million units, dropping 2.2% year-over-year as vendors struggled to meet demand amid ongoing challenges from the supply side and channel disruptions due to the semi-lockdown which continued to drag down Thai market.

Demand for smartphones remained strong, but supply was constrained. As weakening Thai Baht and component prices increased, vendors reluctantly raised their selling prices and launch newer models at a higher price point. However, the premium segment was still intact with better supply and demand, especially for the iPhone 11. 5G-enabled smartphones accounted for more than one-fourth of the total market thanks to multiple new launches such as OPPO Reno 6, Samsung Galaxy A52s and for the first time AIS launched its own budget housebrand 5G device Ruio R1. IDC expects 5G share to cross 30% by end of the year as more 5G smartphones launch in the lower price bands.

“The impact from supply chain and exchange rate left vendors no choice but to raise their selling prices, especially Android vendors,” according to Teerit Paowan, Client Devices Market Analyst at IDC Thailand. “Consumers have to inevitably purchase the devices at a higher price range,” he added.

 

Top 5 Smartphone Vendor Highlights

Samsung came back at the top spot with A-series models such as the Galaxy A12 and Galaxy A02 being volume drivers and its supplies recovering significantly after shortages in 2Q21. Samsung launched its new flagship Galaxy Flip3 and Galaxy Fold3 with handsome trade-in offers and other incentives.

OPPO aggressively focused on its 5G smartphones, bringing in the new Reno 6-series and A74 5G. However, the main driver was still budget-priced A15 even as the low-end models faced tight supply.

vivo launched many new models such as Y33s and Y21, but its shipments were hit hard by supply constraints. The Y-series continued to be the biggest volume contributor, with the Y12A having the highest share.

Xiaomi shipments were driven by the entry-level segment and continued to expand in offline channels. New launches such as the Mi 11T-series received a good market response. However, Xiaomi also faced acute supply shortages.

Apple had the best “low-season” quarter. Demand remained strong and was not much impacted by the bearish trends in the market, and was largely driven by its N-1 models and a high reliance on the telco channel.

“With supply famine, it looks less likely to have aggressive smartphone discounting campaigns in the upcoming holiday season, as we expect supply constraints to continue into the first half of 2022 as well,” said Teerit.

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