Samsung's share of the Chinese smartphone market fell below one percentage point as of the fourth quarter of 2017, according to data compiled by research firm Strategy Analytics. The South Korean tech giant has been witnessing its business dwindling down in China in recent years, with its current performance in the Far Eastern country not being comparable to the period from 2011 to 2013 when the firm was the largest smartphone vendor in the country by both shipments and sales. According to the latest data, the company currently holds only 0.8-percent of the local market and is the twelveth largest original equipment manufacturer in the country.
Strategy Analytics previously predicted that Samsung's market share in China will drop to 1.6-percent over the final three months of 2017, with the new findings hence showing a figure that's twice as worse than originally expected. The Seoul-based company has been trying to revitalize its Chinese business for years now, having opted for a strategy that combines highly localized versions of its flagship offerings such as the Galaxy S9 lineup and niche devices like the W2018 flip phone which for a short while was the company's most powerful smartphone in the world. Last August, Samsung reorganized its China business and closed a wide variety of retail locations in the country, in addition to opening several new ones. Three months prior to that move, the company replaced its China chief, having awarded that role to its long-time executive Kwon Kye-hyun.
Samsung's mobile head Koh Dong-jin previously apologized to investors for the company's underwhelming performance in China where it's been priced out of essentially every segment of the market, from low-end offerings to flagship products. Samsung as a whole is still the world's largest smartphone OEM in terms of both shipments and sales, according to every major industry tracker, with the general consensus being that nearly every third handset shipped in the last 12 months was manufactured by the Korean conglomerate.