The Huawei Honor X10 5G, pictured, sold out almost immediately at the US$147 price, But the Xiaomi K30 5G was still on sale at US$192 as I write, down from US$228. Oppo, Vivo, Realme, and ZTE all have models under US$280. These are fine phones, about 6.5" and with 3 or 4 cameras. (618 is a special sales holiday at jd.com and Alibaba. Prices tumble and sales are many billions. Amazon's "Prime Day" is a copy.)
13 phone makers are fighting for a market that can only really support 4 or 5. Xiaomi set off the price with a US$285 announcement in December, one reason I put out the 210 million forecast, twice as high as most others. Even the most aggressive didn't expect prices of $200-250 before late in the year.
Component prices have been tumbling. MediaTek and Qualcomm have been slashing prices on their new mid-range 5G chips, while UNISOC/ is now also shipping chips. BOE in particular has a massive capacity for screens. Qualcomm has new RF front end components, forcing the traditional RF vendors to fight for market share. Sony has a billion-dollar camera plant that must keep busy.
5G, disappointing in the West, is exploding in China. 15 million phones in May, 10,000 bases upgraded per week, price dropped from ~$18 to ~$13/month. China almost certainly will hit its 2020 goal of 150 million. The 5G iPhone with 5 nm processor going into production in July, should be a big seller in U.S. late in the year.Add a comment