Apple jumps to second highest seller of smartphones in Vietnam for first time
iPhone accounted for 20.5 percent of market share in Vietnam in October 2022, according to GfK.
The figure was only less than 1 percent higher than Oppo, but this was enough for iPhone to jump to the second position in the domestic smartphone market.
The new-generation phones play an important role in the jump. iPhone 14 Pro Max held 41 percent of market share among the 10 best selling iPhones in the first month of the fourth quarter. The two new iPhones – iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max – accounted for 52 percent of the hundreds of thousands of Apple smartphones sold.
Tran Duc Tin from The Gioi Di Dong (Mobile World), the largest smartphone retail chain in Vietnam, said the iPhone 14 Pro Max has attracted Vietnamese users because of the changes in appearance.
Nearly all well-known tech-product retailers in Vietnam began delivering products to clients at midnight on October 14.
Unlike iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max, iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus have not had as many orders as expected. FPT Shop reported that more than two-thirds of registrations chose iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max.
“In addition to the attractiveness of iPhone 14, the fact that supply from unofficial sources has been blocked has also helped increase revenue for authorized resellers,” a manager told VietNamNet.
Unofficial sources are understood as products carried out across border gates or imported through unofficial channels.
More Vietnamese now buy iPhones from authorized resellers though imports through unofficial channels are usually cheaper because of strict requirements for the warranty. Some of Apple’s maintenance partners give services only to clients who can show bills from parties authorized by Apple.
But imports through unofficial channels have become less popular over the last two years.
Decree 98/2020 is another reason causing imports through unofficial channels to lose their appeal. The decree, which took effect on October 15, 2020, stipulates that goods without import licenses that do not go across borders specifically reserved for them and don’t follow customs clearance will be punished.
That is why many private smartphone dealers have had to import products, and some have shifted to sell products officially distributed in Vietnam.
The biggest factor affecting the buying of officially distributed iPhones is the price, according to Nguyen Minh Tuan, director of Minh Tuan Mobile. Over the last two years, iPhones have not been much more expensive than imports through unofficial channels. In some cases, they were even cheaper.
Digiworld, one of the official distributors of Apple’s products in Vietnam, estimates that imports through unofficial channels accounted for 40 percent of market share in 2020. When clients shifted to buy authentic iPhones, Apple’s market share increased.
“I am not surprised about the fact that Apple has jumped to the second position, because in the latest financial reports, Apple’s CEO repeatedly mentions Vietnam as one of the markets with the most impressive markets, together with India, Brazil and Indonesia,” Tuan said.
At the iPhone 14 launching ceremony in the US, Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, told VietNamNet that he could not wait to go to Vietnam.
With such an impressive growth rate, it is understandable why Apple wants to develop the Vietnamese market. The manufacturer has recruited personnel in Vietnam and works directly with retailers and distributors. A number of stores specializing in Apple products have opened over the last year, while some retailers have been granted AAR (Apple Authorized Reseller) status.
As of mid-October, ShopDunk had 63 stores designed under global Apple standards, while TopZone had 97 stores in large cities. F. Studio has upgraded some stores to have a more luxurious display space for Apple products. All of these stores opened over the last year. Meanwhile, many AAR stores of partners have also opened throughout Vietnam.