Retail demand for laptops and tablets linked to remote working or studying as a result of the pandemic resulted in a notable surge in 2020, a trend which is set to weaken over 2021 as demand cools and returns to greater normalisation under the effective containment of the virus in China. Laptops was one of the major beneficiaries of the emergence of COVID-19, with retail volume sales set to register further single-digit growth in 2021 due to an ongoing work-from-home and work-from-anywhere culture.
The US government’s sanctions imposed on Huawei had placed pressure on the player prior to the pandemic. The supply chain instabilities which have stemmed from COVID-19 in addition to these sanctions have only served to exacerbate a chip shortage for Huawei, weakening its share and sales within computers.
The pandemic has fostered a greater consumer preference for online shopping in China. E-commerce remains favourable due to its competitive prices, expansive product offerings and unparalleled convenience in terms of home delivery, and therefore it is set to continue as the dominant distribution channel for computers and peripherals in 2021, despite posting slower volume growth compared to the previous year.
COVID-19 has inevitably forced enterprises to make further investments in order to accelerate their digital transformation. Moving towards e-commerce for external customers and ensuring that business operations are not disrupted by staff working from home have become two of the primary considerations for companies’ digital investment in addition to bringing greater opportunities to business laptops over the forecast period.
The sudden need for many consumers to work remotely from home also resulted in the desire to have access to entertainment, creating opportunities for gaming devices. Despite the mitigated lockdown and resumption of outdoor activities, the gaming frenzy is likely to remain as the “home as sanctuary” trend persists throughout 2021 with consumers indulging in an alternative form of at-home entertainment.
A marginal improvement in demand for printers in 2020 was primarily derived from home-schooling, a trend which was short-lived following the full reopening of schools across the nation by the end of the year. Consequently, retail volume sales of printers are predicted to experience a stronger decline over 2021, with limited possibilities for recovery over the forecast period.
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Understand the latest market trends and future growth opportunities for the Computers and Peripherals industry in China with research from Euromonitor International's team of in-country analysts – experts by industry and geographic specialisation.
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This report originates from Passport, our Computers and Peripherals research and analysis database.
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