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Gartner cuts 2022 mobile phone sales estimates to fall 7.1%

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) – Gartner forecast global mobile phone sales to fall 7.1 percent this year on Thursday, revising its previous estimate of 2.2 percent growth, citing inflation, the Russian invasion of Ukraine and shutdowns in China.

Mobile phone shipments in 2022 are expected to drop to 1.46 billion units from 1.57 billion, and Gartner’s previous forecast of 1.60 billion.

“About 150 million mobile phone shipments have been taken out of the forecast and what this tells you is that the age (of mobile phones) is increasing,” Gartner senior analyst Ranjit Atwal told Reuters in an interview.

“For every three months people keep their phones, about 150 million units are lost.”

Fears of a global recession and high inflation in many countries may influence consumers’ decisions to spend on discretionary items.

The research firm also expects worldwide PC shipments to decline 9.5% in 2022, compared to its previous forecast of a 4% decline. Lenovo (0992.HK), HP Inc (HPQ.N), and Dell (DELL.N) are the top three PC manufacturers.

Atwal said the declining PC and smartphone market won’t be offset by automobiles and other areas likely to alleviate chip shortages later this year.

The high demand for smartphones and personal computers during the pandemic has led tech companies to place huge orders with chip makers, leading to shortages of semiconductors used in industries including automobiles and telecommunications.

Mobile phone makers Samsung (005930.KS) and Apple (AAPL.O) saw sales decline in many regions in the first quarter hit by the COVID-19 Chinese lockdowns.

Gartner said smartphone shipments are expected to decline 5.8% this year and that of larger China shipments are expected to decline 18.3%.

“At the beginning of the year, the 5G phone market in China was expected to show double-digit growth,” Atwal said.

“The second half of the year is very strong for China, but even then it hasn’t been a strong enough place to make up for what happened.”

(Suvantha Mukherjee reports in Stockholm). Edited by Rashmi Aish

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