US smartphone sales dropped 25% during Q2 2020 due to coronavirus

Smartphone sales in the US dropped 25% during the second quarter of 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

That’s according to new research from Counterpoint Research which found that pre-paid options were hit hardest, while post-paid channels decreased 20%.

The latter were somewhat offset by a higher number of devices being sold online compared to the same quarter in 2019.

Online sales grew to 31% from 14% in the previous year. This performed well for Samsung and Apple which reached a higher percentage of online sales.

However, the launch of the Samsung Galaxy S20 coincided with lockdowns leading to an estimated 38% fewer activations of the S20 compared to the S10 in 2019.

Meanwhile, Apple volume sales of its iPhone SE series grew.

Sales of iPhone devices were drive by previous owners of iPhone devices (6S or higher at 30%).

“Mid-March through mid-April saw the weakest sales as it was the height of the first COVID-19 lockdowns in the US. April was the weakest month for smartphone sell-through as about 80% of smartphone sales channels were closed; sell-through volume was down over 50%,” explained Jeff Fieldhack, North America Research Director at Counterpoint.

“Smartphone sales for May through the end of June grew week-over-week. June 2020 sales were stronger than June 2019 sales, which shows the US smartphone market is resilient.”

However smartphone sales have recovered since US consumers received financial aid and shops have reopened. Those who had been looking to purchase a new phone simply held off rather than committing to buy.

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