Thailand’s smartphone market grew 1.6% year over year and 8.3% quarter over quarter in the third quarter of 2023, marking the first indications of a recovery after six consecutive quarters of annual decline, according to IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker.
Strong growth was seen in the premium segment (US$1,000+), which saw a year-over-year growth of 25.9% thanks to the introduction of new models like Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold5 and Apple’s iPhone 15 series. Driven by Oppo, Samsung, and Xiaomi, the mid-range (US$200 < US$400) also saw significant growth in value and volume, with the segment expanding 61.8% year over year. The market as a whole saw an average selling price (ASP) of US$360, up 7.8% from the previous year.
Because of its mid-to-high end Reno 10 series, several new low-end model launches, and alliances with telcos, Oppo was able to take the lead. With its new foldable range and Galaxy A series, Samsung targeted both the mid-range and premium markets, coming in second and third, respectively. Despite increases in overall shipments from both new and older generation models, Apple solidly maintained its third-place position.
The increased launches and shipments of 5G Android models in the mid-range to lower-end segments as well as increased shipments in the premium segments are what drove the increase in the share of 5G smartphones to 46%, up from 38% in the third quarter of 2022 and 37% in the second quarter of 2023.
According to projections, the Thai smartphone market will end 2023 with a sharp single-digit fall. But, the market saw the first indications of a rebound in the third quarter of 2022, as retail spending and consumer confidence rose across the board. According to Apirat Ratanavichit, Research Analyst at IDC Thailand, “the upcoming quarters should see a rebound in the Thai smartphone market as the nation moves into the year-end season and the economy gains momentum from the government’s planned stimulus policies.”