Apple’s iPhones held up surprisingly well in China even as the country faced Covid lockdowns

Apple’s smartphone shipments in China jumped sharply in the second quarter, even as the country faced Covid-related lockdowns in major cities, according to a new report.

In the second quarter, Apple shipped 9.9 million iPhones in China — up 25% year-on-year, market research firm Canalys said in a report published Friday.

UBS analysts also said that Apple likely saw almost 25% year-on-year growth in iPhone shipments in China in the second quarter of 2022, in a note published earlier this month.

In China, the Cupertino giant held up relatively well in the April to June period despite a 10% slump in the the country’s overall smartphone market as a result of a resurgence in Covid, which sent major cities like Shanghai into strict lockdowns.

“Apple has been also enjoying resilient demand in the high-end segment, despite the severe lockdowns in its key cities,” Toby Zhu, analyst at Canalys, said in a press release. “The vendor’s active marketing during the promotional period has also been a key contributing factor.” 

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In early June, Shanghai and Beijing began to relax their lockdown measures and most of Apple’s growth in China came during the month. UBS forecasts that June iPhone shipments surged 227% year-on-year.

Apple CEO Tim Cook said the reopening of cities plus a major weeks-long shopping shopping festival called “618” — which culminates on June 18 — helped the June recovery. 

“We did see a lower demand based on the Covid lockdowns in the cities that the Covid lockdowns affected. And we did see a rebound in those same cities toward the end of the quarter in the June timeframe,” Cook said on Apple’s earnings call.

“And in particular, in the run-up to June 18, which as you know, is a major shopping holiday in China,” he added.

“We think that the net of that was still a negative, but some of it did rebound by June time frame.”

Apple on Thursday reported Greater China revenue, which includes Taiwan and Hong Kong, declined 1% year-on-year to $14.6 billion.

The company also said its services revenue, which includes sales from its App Store and Apple Music, hit a June quarter record.

(With Inputs from CNBC)

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