The iPhone 5C has failed to gain market traction in China, scuppering Apple’s attempts at high-jacking the country’s booming mid-tier smartphone market.
Apple’s primary assembly partner, Foxconn, once created 50,000 units a week but is now producing around 8000-9000. According to Chinese-language newspaper Commerical Times, an internet user claiming to be a worker at Foxconn’s Zhengzhou factory said they are halting production altogether.
He suggested production would cease due to the phone having too many flaws and its high price point. Smartphone retailer Dixon’s has reported that in China 78.6% of iPhone sales have come from the 5S and 21.4% the iPhone 5C.
Other retailers could be selling their 5C units at a loss to clear the stock.
Apple has already halved production of the 5C after what was quoted as “dismal sales” in China.
Rumour was the iPhone 5C would be a budget alternative to the giant’s flagship 5S. In reality the iPhone 5c – a repackaged iPhone 5 – just wasn’t cheap enough, with a retail price starting at
In terms of the global market, the 5C sales have been stronger than China but not a huge success. Analytics and marketing company Localytics claim 2.23 iPhone 5S units have been sold to every iPhone 5C. In China the figure is 3.68 5S models to every 5C.
Apple’s financial situation is still strong with high sales of the iPhone 5S, however, and the company posted sales of 9 million combined 5s/5c handsets during opening weekend.
In an investor, Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Brian White said: “During our visit to Apple stores and resellers this week in China, we have found that there is healthy interest in the iPhone 5C.”
He added: “However, we believe this has not yet translated into exciting volume levels in China.”
Although demand for the plastic iPhone in China is said to be ‘soft’, the colourful range is proving popular in the UK, reports the Mail Online. The pink iPhone 5C is said to have accounted for around 46% of all shipments in Britain, with blue in second [32%] and green in third [12%].
The solution to Apple’s China-based woes? Simple: reduce the price of the handset and sales will improve. C Technology’s reports shows that Apple has already reduced the price of the 5c in certain areas from 4,488 yuan (£459) to 3,500 yuan (£358), respectively.
Expect to see further reductions very soon.