2021 to see around 9 mn foldable smartphones, Samsung to lead

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New Delhi, Aug 8 (IANS) The shipment of foldable smartphones will remain in single digit in 2021 at around 9 million units — a three times growth over 2020 — with Samsung dominating with over 88 per cent market share.

By 2023, Counterpoint Research expects a 10 times growth in foldable smartphone shipments.

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Samsung will unveil its next-generation foldable smartphones at a virtual event on August 11.

“Although the market for foldables is still niche, we expect 2021 shipments of Samsung foldable smartphones to grow significantly, driven by improved design and hardware, and competitive pricing,” according to the report.

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Even with more original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) entering the foldable smartphone space, Samsung is likely to continue dominating with nearly 75 per cent market share.

If Apple is on track to release its foldable smartphone by 2023, it will not only be an inflection point in taking foldables mainstream but also improve the component yield and scale for the entire supply chain.

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“With a significant price drop, improved design, and appearance, Samsung is likely to target younger customers with the new foldable Flip smartphone. The new Galaxy Z models will get S Pen support too, which can help absorb existing Note users,” said Senior Analyst Jene Park.

The premium smartphone market in China will be particularly interesting for Samsung.

“Despite having a negligible market share, Samsung can secure Huawei’s vacant spot, and its success can contribute towards total shipment and sales volumes for its new foldables,” Park added.

Even as Apple and Samsung dominate the premium segment of the US smartphone market, the foldables remain very expensive, even on a monthly payment plan.

“More affordable Samsung foldable smartphones may be attractive to some users, especially those who have previously purchased ‘plus’- or ‘ultra’-sized S-series or Note models,” said senior analyst Maurice Klaehne.

“If the Flip model can be sold at a similar price point as the ‘ultra’, we might see more adoption in the future,” he added.

–IANS

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