The smartphone market is showing an improvement in demand during the second half of this year due to the peak season for e-commerce promotional activities and the easing of COVID-19 outbreaks in regions such as Southeast Asia, according to TrendForce’s latest research.
The total iPhone production for 3Q21 registered a quarter-over-quarter (QoQ) increase of 22.6% to 51.5 million units. With this result, Apple was able to climb to second place in the global smartphone ranking. TrendForce says Apple is staying with the plan to release its third-generation iPhone SE in the first quarter of 2022 and four models under a new series in the second half of the year.
The research group says the third-generation iPhone SE is expected to be a major instrument in helping Apple establish a presence in the market segment for mid-range 5G smartphones. Its production volume for 2022 is forecasted to reach 25-30 million units.
That noted, TrendForce says there have been significant shortages of components including 4G SoCs, low-end 5G SoCs, display panel driver ICs, and more. The persistent component gaps are constraining smartphone brands from raising device production for the second half of the year, notes the research group. Looking at quarter three of 2021, the quarterly total smartphone production came to around 325 million units, a 5.7% quarter-over-quarter increase. Even so, TrendForce says that not only does the QoQ increase in smartphone production for 3Q21 fall short of the QoQ increase for the same quarter last year, but the quarterly production volume for 3Q21 also shows a weaker performance result when compared with figures from 3Q20 or from 3Q19, prior to the emergence of the pandemic.
As for the total production for the whole 2021, TrendForce has lowered the projection to 1.335 billion units with a year-over-year growth rate of 6.5%. The previous projection was 1.345 billion units with a year-over-year growth rate of 7.3%.