Canalys predicts: production of more than 30 million foldable smartphones in 2024
The volume of folding smartphones released in 2021 is about 8.9 million devices were announced, among which the largest share was Samsung. In the past year, the foldable smartphone category – despite the high price of these products – achieved a 148% year-on-year growth. To understand the importance of this growth, it should be noted that the annual growth figure of the entire smartphone market in 2021 is reported to be only 7%.
According to Canalys research analyst Runar Bjørhovde, the unprecedented shift of people to using large-screen devices during the Corona pandemic is one of the most important accelerators of the foldable smartphone market. Consumers are constantly looking for a better experience on their devices. Therefore, a better experience (in terms of productivity and entertainment) on large screens has raised the standard level of these products. Considering that the world is moving towards more reopenings as the corona fever subsides, new opportunities are created for smartphone sellers to meet the needs and demands of consumers by producing products such as foldable smartphones.
Toby Zhu, Canalys analyst, believes that the foldable form factor can increase smartphone sales by diversifying products. The appeal of these phones – especially for users of high-end phones as well as those who buy these products for the first time – is very high. Currently, Android device vendors are under pressure in the high-end segment, as shipments of smartphones priced above $800 have dropped 18 percent compared to 2019. This is despite the fact that in the same period of time, the supply of iPhone has been accompanied by 68% growth. Therefore, Toby Zhu believes that Google and the big sellers of Android devices should double their investment in order to diversify the hardware and user experience so that they can remain attractive to high-end customers.
Another Canalys analyst, Amber Liu, considers Samsung to be the main player in the foldable phone market and attributes the rapid development of the supply chain ecosystem of these products to this company in recent years. According to Liu, on the one hand, the number of manufacturers of folding screens, hinges and other key parts needed to make foldable phones is increasing, and on the other hand, the manufacturers of these devices are looking for them with engineering solutions as well as creative designs in order to create user experience. Better, reduce the price of these products.
According to Amber Liu, in addition to hardware innovation, the main battlefield in the field of foldable phones is their software user experience; This requires a lot of investment in the user interface and capable software, because the foldable phone app ecosystem is still far from optimal. In the meantime, we should mention the latest Android Dev Summit event, which was held in November last year, where many new features were introduced for developers of applications for foldable devices and devices equipped with two screens.
Amber Liu describes the future of the foldable device market as follows: “Major smartphone vendors are preparing to compete in the foldable category – which will form an important part of their high-end and corporate branding strategies.” He further mentioned that at the same time as the process of reducing the thickness, weight and price of folding devices continues – which is very important for reaching the mass market of these products – it is expected that we will see the release of many folding devices in the new year. By showing off their abilities, the main players in this field seek to outdo their competitors by creating different and advanced experiences.