Portable Consumer Electronics in Asia Pacific

October 2021

Sales of portable consumer electronics went into decline in Asia Pacific in 2020 due to Coronavirus (COVID-19), but will quickly bounce back into positive growth in 2021, with further annual increases expected over the forecast period. Wireless speakers, smart wearables and TWS earbuds will continue to see dynamic growth, while products like digital cameras and many of the items in portable players will continue to be substituted by the ever-improving versatility of the smartphone.

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Key Findings

Decline in 2020 proves to be a one-off

Up to 2020, the historic period saw positive growth rates being recorded every year, with the same expected in the post-pandemic period. COVID-19 disrupted the market in 2020, seeing sales decline for the first time in many years. Although the virus was still present in many countries moving into the new year, 2021 will see an immediate rebound back to positive annual growth rates.

Increased health awareness due to the pandemic should boost wearables

To target consumers who have diversified demands, new smart wearables are developing differentiated positionings. In addition to fully functional smart wearables such as Apple Watch, advanced health management features have been pushed to the fore in terms of new product development, with heart rate and blood oxygen monitors becoming standard. The new Huawei Watch 3 boasts a number of features, such as All-Day Health Monitoring, which includes detection of bloody oxygen levels through its TruSeen 4.5+ technology, and a new Skin Temperature Detector, which is particularly relevant post-pandemic.

E-commerce share continues growing

Online sales received a major boost from the pandemic in 2020, but are expected to continue gaining share in 2021. E-commerce represented an ideal way of buying goods for consumers in lockdown or looking to avoid going out in public to minimise the risk of contracting a potentially deadly virus. With large numbers of industry players having improved their online activities, many people seem to have been persuaded to permanently shift to internet retailing.

Roll-out of 5G should help drive smartphone sales

Networks offering 5G coverage are gradually being rolled out in some countries, which should help persuade consumers to upgrade to 5G-compatible models, providing momentum for a category that had generally been stagnating prior to the pandemic.


Key findings

Regional Overview

Asia Pacific accounts for half of global unit volume sales
2020’s decline a one-off, with positive growth forecast again from 2021
China and India dominate regional sales
TWS earbuds account for a major chunk of new sales in 2016-2021
High penetration rates hit smartphone sales over the historic period
Immediate return to growth after one-off dip in sales due to COVID-19
Electronics and appliance specialist retailers still the leading channel…
…in spite of the rising popularity of e-commerce

Leading Companies and Brands

Major concentration seen in the Indian market over 2016-2021
Huawei slipping down the rankings as it loses share
Only Sony does not generate most of its sales in China or India
Xiaomi expected to take over top spot from Huawei in 2021

Forecast Projections

Positive growth expected throughout the forecast period
Indonesia will record impressive volume and value CAGRs in 2021-2026

Country Snapshots

China: Market Context
China: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Hong Kong, China: Market Context
Hong Kong, China: Competitive and Retail Landscape
India: Market Context
India: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Indonesia: Market Context
Indonesia: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Japan: Market Context
Japan: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Malaysia: Market Context
Malaysia: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Philippines: Market Context
Philippines: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Singapore: Market Context
Singapore: Competitive and Retail Landscape
South Korea: Market Context
South Korea: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Taiwan: Market Context
Taiwan: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Thailand: Market Context
Thailand: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Vietnam: Market Context
Vietnam: Competitive and Retail Landscape


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