(Economic Observation) Can 5G mobile phones become a new engine when the Chinese mobile phone market declines?

  China News Service, Beijing, August 20 (Reporter Liu Yuying) As global demand for mobile phones is sluggish due to the epidemic, the shipments of China's mobile phone market fell by 20.4% in the first seven months. However, China is the country with the fastest 5G construction in the world, and the 5G mobile phone market is developing rapidly.

  According to data released by the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology, in July 2020, China’s domestic mobile phone market shipped 22.301 million units, a year-on-year decrease of 34.8%; from January to July, the total mobile phone market shipments totaled 175 million units, a year-on-year decrease. A decrease of 20.4%.

  The sharp decline in the Chinese mobile phone market is consistent with the global situation. IDC (International Data Corporation) report shows that the total global smartphone market shipments in the second quarter were about 276.5 million units, down 16.6% year-on-year.

  IDC believes that smartphone shipments fell sharply in the second quarter, mainly because consumer spending fell sharply under the influence of the global economic crisis and the rising unemployment rate caused by the large-scale blockade.

  However, 5G mobile phones in the Chinese market are replacing 4G mobile phones. As of the end of July, the cumulative shipments of 5G mobile phones in the Chinese market were 77.508 million units, with 119 new models on the market. The domestic 5G mobile phone shipments in July were 13.911 million units, accounting for 62.4% of the mobile phone shipments in the same period.

  Several factors are positive for 5G mobile phone sales. In terms of 5G network construction, China's speed has exceeded expectations. According to Wang Zhiqin, vice president of the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology, China's three major telecom operators will be able to complete their annual construction targets by the end of the third quarter, covering cities above the prefecture level.

  In 2019, Ericsson expects that there will be 100 million 5G users worldwide in 2020, and this year will be adjusted to 190 million. The main reason is the pull of the Chinese market. According to an Ericsson survey, 59% of Chinese consumers surveyed are willing to invest in 5G.

  Wang Zhiqin said that by the end of July, the number of 5G users in China had exceeded 88 million, accounting for 80% of the world, ranking first in the world.

  Secondly, because MediaTek has launched a 5G mobile phone chip SOC suitable for low-end mobile phones, the price of 5G mobile phones has dropped to more than 1,300 yuan. Industry insiders are expected to launch 5G "thousand yuan phones" by the end of the year, entering an era of rapid popularity.

  Thirdly, all mobile phone manufacturers do not want to “be left behind” in the new 5G track, and have stepped up efforts to innovate. For example, the fast charging function. The iQOO5Pro under vivo's newly released this week has 120W ultra-fast flash charging, which can charge the phone to 100% in 15 minutes. The iPhone11 is still 18W.

  Zhong Xinlong, a researcher at the Institute of Information and Software Industry of CCID Think Tank, said that the technical content of domestic mobile phones is improving. In the field of fast charging, the two major forces of OPPO and vivo have entered an explosive period. The rapid increase from 55W at the beginning of the year to 100W and 120W. From single-cell batteries to dual-cell batteries, technological progress is obvious to all.

  In addition, Apple will launch the 5G mobile phone iPhone12 in the second half of the year. Apple has approximately one-third of the global market share. It is expected that the Apple replacement wave will also stimulate the Android system replacement wave.

  Zhao Juntao, President of Ericsson China, said that from Ericsson's survey, whether it is a mobile phone or a system in the first half of the year, the manufacturer's original plan will be affected to some extent, and this trend will continue into the second half of the year. This year’s mobile phone shipments will be affected a bit, but from a longer-term perspective, the impact will be small.

  At present, the industry is looking forward to the early emergence of 5G "killer" applications, making 5G mobile phones a "standard configuration" for consumers. Now the WeChat, live broadcast, and high-definition videos that users use most can all be realized through 4G. The 5G services vigorously promoted by operators such as 5G virtual reality and 5G cloud gaming are not “killer applications”.

  In the future, other terminals may also become "explosive models." Zhong Xinlong said that after more than a decade of development of mobile phone chips, technological dividends have begun to spill over to the Internet, autonomous driving and other fields. In the 5G era, the mobile phone battlefield will gradually expand to areas such as wearable devices and smart TVs. (Finish)