The demand for personal computers is growing due to the fact that people have to work from home. In contrast, during the COVID-19 pandemic, the demand for smartphones is plummeting.
Research by IDC and Canalys shows that smartphone shipments in the first quarter of 2020 decreased by 12-13 percent compared to the same period last year. TrendForce reports that the production of smartphones has also fallen by 10 percent.
In general, this is the biggest reduction in the smartphone market during the year for the entire existence of smartphones.
At the beginning of the year, when the pandemic began in China, supply chain problems arose in January and February. But as coronavirus spread throughout the globe, it triggered an economic crisis that affected consumer demand.
Many people are suddenly unemployed or underemployed and may not want to spend money on a new smartphone - especially at a time when prices for flagship smartphones fluctuate around the $1,000 mark.
Many retail stores where people could upgrade their smartphones were closed, which also compounded the drop in sales.
Canalys suggests that many people still buying smartphones do so because they need to replace a broken or lost device. At the same time, those people who view smartphones as a luxury purchase may postpone updates for the time being.
Interestingly, not all smartphone manufacturers have experienced declines in sales. In the first quarter of 2020, Chinese companies Xiaomi and Vivo showed growth, while Samsung, Huawei, and Apple experienced a decline.