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iPhone 15 Targets Higher Price Points, Android and HarmonyOS Expand Their Presence in the High-End Segment
iPhone 15 Targets Higher Price Points, Android and HarmonyOS Expand Their Presence in the High-End Segment

The iPhone 15 series, launching a week later than the iPhone 14 last year, set a new record average price driven by the iPhone Pro Max / Pro product lines. However, due to supply cycle constraints, the growth of the iPhone Pro Max/Pro line slowed during the China Golden Week holiday. With increasing competition in the high-end product market, product lifecycle and layout in different price bands are becoming key competitive factors, making the precise planning of high-end products by price range noteworthy.

Apple’s September Sales Remain Stable with Average Price Increase

Apple began pre-orders for the iPhone 15 series on September 15, officially going on sale on the 22nd. This was a week's delay compared to last year's iPhone 14 series. According to Sandalwood's China e-commerce market monitoring data, Apple's overall smartphone sales in September decreased by 6% year-on-year, while the sales volume remained stable with the previous year, and the average price continued to grow.

iPhone 15's First-Month Sales Driven by Pro/Pro Max

When looking at the average daily sales of the iPhone 15 series, both the iPhone 15 Pro Max and Pro models saw a 25% increase in daily sales compared to the same period of the previous year's 14 series, while the standard version only had a 4% YoY increase. Features like the 5x 120mm periscope telephoto lens, titanium frame, and a 221g body weight of the 15 Pro Max effectively drove sales. The 15 Pro, a balanced high-end product weighing 187g, steadily met market demands. Changes in iPhone configurations effectively catered to the market's needs.

iPhone's Average Price Hits a New High

In September 2023, the average selling price of iPhones reached 7982 yuan, an increase of 500 yuan compared to the same period last year. This is mainly due to Apple adjusting its pricing strategy for new models. Apart from the base version, the prices of other versions have increased. The Pro Max and Pro product lines have distinctive hardware configurations, which led to significant sales growth.

High Growth of Pro Lineup Limited by Supply

However, data up to October 7 shows that the growth rate for the Pro and Pro Max versions fell to 15% YoY due to supply issues, while the standard version saw a YoY growth exceeding 10%. Amid continuous competition from Android and HarmonyOS, it remains to be seen whether the iPhone 15 series can maintain its price and volume growth.

Apple's Market Share by Price Segment Declines as Android and HarmonyOS Increase Their High-End Presence

According to Sandalwood's China e-commerce market monitoring data, due to Apple's shorter sales cycle in September and the continuous move towards high-end products by Android and HarmonyOS, Apple's market share in different price segments declined compared to the previous year:

In the ultra-high-end segment, Apple's market share in the 10,000+ yuan segment decreased by 11 percentage points year-on-year.

The 9,000-10,000 yuan segment remains Apple's strongest market, with the share remaining stable YoY.

In the sub-high-end 7,000-9,000 yuan segment, Apple's market share began to waver, declining by 13 percentage points.

In the segment covered by Apple's standard model, 5,000-7,000 yuan, the market share dropped by 15% YoY.

Interestingly, in the entry-level high-end 4,000-5,000 yuan segment, Apple's market share recovered slightly compared to the previous year.

Strengthening High-End Competitive Strategy in the New Market Dynamics, Refining Product Planning in the High-End Price Segment

Changes in Apple's high-end market share across segments suggest that the high-end smartphone market is undergoing a new evolution. Manufacturers need to consider how to further reinforce their high-end competitive strategy in this changing landscape. On one hand, foundational components like chip design, operating systems, and AI applications are becoming critical competitive elements. Continuous improvements in technology and user experience, product quality, brand differentiation, and breakthroughs in features such as foldable screens become essential. With increasing competition in the high-end market, the careful planning and differentiation of high-end products by price range is worth considering.

Sandalwood continuously monitors the market performance of global smartphones in China, including detailed data analysis on SKU, ASP, etc. If you would like to learn more, please contact us at:

Disclaimer: The content and viewpoints expressed in this article are for reference purposes only and should not be construed as investment advice or recommendations. very investor should conduct thorough independent research and consult with professional investment advisors before making any investment decisions.
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