Apple has high hopes for the Chinese market and has been working hard to win hearts and minds in that country for a few years now. China is the largest mobile phone market in the world, and Apple’s second largest market.
But the American tech giant has hit some big speed bumps in China. The China market contributed 20% of Apple’s total sales ($44.8 billion) in fiscal 2017, down from 22% in 2016. The main reason for that is Chinese consumers have been choosing less expensive smartphones—from companies like Oppo and Huawei—over recent iPhones.
The iPhone X, however, is showing signs of turning that situation around. One analyst, Katy Huberty of Morgan Stanley, says the numbers show that the iPhone X has come out of the gates far faster than earlier models, including the iPhone 8 and iPhone Plus.
Citing mobile messaging data, Morgan Stanley writes in a research note that after 16 days of availability, the iPhone X already accounts for 0.36% of all mobile devices in use in China.
Huberty adds: “Importantly, the data through November 19 only contains 16 days of iPhone X availability, whereas the comparable period for the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus includes a full 28 days. As a result, we expect further acceleration of iPhone X relative to iPhone 8/8 Plus in the next data release.”
The supply of the iPhone X only recently caught up with demand, which led some analysts to believe that demand is lower than expected. But a recent RBC Capital Markets iPhone demand survey suggests otherwise, showing that 62% of respondents in China are interested in buying an iPhone X (compared…