Tech Trends

Smartphones Continue Decline

The already sluggish forecast for smartphones looks to be headed toward a slightly steeper decline this year.

According to a new forecast from market research firm IDC, global smartphone shipments will decline 3.2% in 2023, almost triple the decline that had been forecast for the market in February (1.1% decline). Overall unit shipments are expected to hit 1.17 billion for the year.

IDC said causes include weak consumer demand, inflation, and a weaker economic outlook.

"Our conversations with channels, supply chain partners, and major OEMs all point to recovery being pushed further out and a weaker second half of the year," said Nabila Popal research director with IDC's Mobility and Consumer Device Trackers, in a prepared statement. "Consumer demand is recovering much slower than expected in all regions, including China. If 2022 was a year of excess inventory, 2023 is a year of caution. While everyone wants to have inventory ready to ride the wave of the inevitable recovery, no one wants to be stuck holding it too long. This also means the brands that take the risk — at the right time — can potentially reap great rewards of share gain."

IDC said it still expects the smartphone market to see a recovery in 2024, with 6% year-over-year growth anticipated.

Further details can be found in IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker.

About the Author

David Nagel is the former editorial director of 1105 Media's Education Group and editor-in-chief of THE Journal, STEAM Universe, and Spaces4Learning. A 30-year publishing veteran, Nagel has led or contributed to dozens of technology, art, marketing, media, and business publications.

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