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Can the Apple Watch help Apple become the top smartphone vendor in China?

Can the Apple Watch help Apple become the top smartphone vendor in China?

That iThingy You're Wearing
February 18, 2015

Could Apple’s newest device help shake up the growing smartphone market in China? According to data from IDC released earlier this week, more than 107.5 million devices were shipped in the country during the final quarter of 2014.


A look at the China smartphone market.

And as you can see from this chart provided by Statista, low-cost Xiaomi took home the top spot during the October to December timeframe with 14 percent of the market. While Xiaomi has come out of nowhere to lead the market in the country, many have accused the company of copying a number of Apple products.

Thanks to the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, Apple was able to storm to second place with 12 percent. As we reported back in January, Chinese buyers definitely seem to be gravitating toward the iPhone 6 Plus and its larger 5.5-inch screen. As you know, the Plus also carries a higher retail price, which definitely helps Apple’s bottom line.

Both of those gains hit Samsung dramatically, which fell to fifth place behind Huawei and Lenovo. Samsung, which has been a longtime Apple rival, had its share of the market cut more than half compared to the same quarter in 2013.

So what could Apple use to help claim the top spot in the country? I think the Apple Watch will be a big help. Anyone who wants the wearable will need to have an iPhone, and that should help increase handset sales even more.

The expensive Apple Watch edition, with its 18-karat gold case, is also expected to sell well in the China market. Apple is reportedly planning to make 1 million of the pictured units during the first three months on the market. And if all of those are sold at a retail price of $5,000, it would add a staggering $5 billion to Apple’s bottom line.

Apple CEO Tim Cook confirmed that the Apple Watch will arrive sometime in April.

For other recent news, see: You have to think and react quickly to win in Atomic Squeeze, a new puzzle game coming in March, NBC takes a step back with its live TV app update, and An updated list of the merchants, cards and apps that accept Apple Pay.

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