Another smartphone player to enter foldable race this year

Barcelona, Feb 28 : As the race for foldable phones heat up, another smartphone player is entering the field that aims to be at the pinnacle experience of today's foldable market. During the ongoing MWC 2023, global technology brand OnePlus announced that it will launch a foldable smartphone in the second half of 2023. "Our first foldable phone will have the signature OnePlus fast and smooth experience. It must be a flagship phone that doesn't settle because of its folding form, in terms of industrial design, mechanical technology, and other aspects," said Kinder Liu, President, and COO of OnePlus at the event. Currently, the foldable smartphone market is dominated by Samsung. Global foldable smartphone shipments are expected to grow 52 per cent (YoY) in FY2023 to reach 22.7 million units. Key drivers will be Samsung and Chinese original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) looking to make their mark, particularly in Europe and China, according to Counterpoint Research. For FY 2022, global foldable shipments will reach 14.9 million units. Cumulative shipments in Q1-Q3 2022 grew 90 per cent YoY to 9.5 million units. "The numbers are tiny when put in the context of the broader market, but looking at the ever-important ultra-premium segment ($1,000 and above), we're seeing foldable start to take hold," according to Tarun Pathak, Director of Counterpoint's global smartphone practice. "In that category, foldable hit double-digit shipment shares this year, and we expect it to rise above 20 per cent in 2023," he added. The global foldable market will likely see stronger competition in 2023 as more Chinese OEMs are expected to enter the space. However, Samsung will continue to lead the market. HONOR, Motorola, and Xiaomi are expected to enter the foldable smartphone market outside China in earnest, said the report. "In 2023, competition is set to intensify in the global foldable smartphone market as the number of participating OEMs will increase," said Senior Analyst Jene Park. /IANS


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