Apple Offers Rare iPhone Discount in China as Demand Fears Rise
Apple is offering discounts across a range of its products in China, including the latest iPhones, its website shows, as it faces rising competition and growing fears of a lack of demand for its flagship smartphone.
The US tech giant cut prices of some iPhones by 5 percent, its Chinese website showed on Monday, December 15. The time-limited promotion, branded as a Lunar New Year event, will last from January 18 through January 21 in a lead-up to the holiday in mid-February.
There are also discounts available on certain Mac models and the iPad. The offers come ahead of the Lunar New Year in mid-February.
While third party retailers in China sometimes offer discounts on iPhones around holiday periods, it’s extremely rare for Apple to do so on its own retail channel.
In a note on Jan. 7, analysts at Jefferies estimated that Apple experienced a 30% decline in iPhone sales year on year in the first week of this month. Jefferies also said Apple saw a 3% year-on-year decline in iPhone sales in China in 2023.
That’s mainly to rising competition from local players like Xiaomi and Huawei, which are offering competitive high-end products.
Last year, Huawei launched a smartphone that contained a high-end chip despite U.S. sanctions designed to stop the Chinese tech giant from getting its hands on such technology. State media hailed it as a technological breakthrough. That device has helped Huawei boost its sales and make its comeback in the smartphone market in China after its handset business was dealt a heavy blow by U.S restrictions.
Jefferies attributes Apple’s iPhone decline last year partly to Huawei’s device.