IDC 2022/23 Australian smartphone market – declining sales, but some vendors have strong growth.

The IDC 2022/23 Australian smartphone market report shows overall smartphone shipments declined slightly by just .3% year-on-year, with OPPO and Google Pixel recording spectacular year-on-year market share growth of 12.1% and 52.6%, respectively.

IDC 2022/23 Australian smartphone market


#1 Apple

The largest supplier in Australia, with a 49.4% market share (up 4.3%). Its iPhone 14 was well received, and there were generous incentives for those with older iPhones to upgrade. Interestingly its sales were the highest on Black Friday and Boxing Day sales when ‘aspiration costs a little less’. It is clear that Australians now either own an iPhone or an Android but in equal amounts with less swapping.

#2 Samsung

Lost 4.7% supplying 28.9% of phones. IDC does not have individual model sales figures but commented that the lower-cost A13/23/33 comprised most of the sales. The Galaxy S22 series sold less than the previous year’s S21, and early interest in Flip3 and Fold3 did not result in sustained sales.


Increased 12.1%, supplying 4.7% of phones. Its lower-cost A-series comprised most of the sales. Like Samsung, as prices increased, sales declined for its mid-range Reno and premium Find series.

#4 Nokia

Lost 7.1%, supplying 3.4% of phones. It is fair to say that 2022 was not a good year due to supply chain issues. Frankly, as we commented, it was as if Nokia had put its current range in the cupboard for a year or so – the feature/value set was simply not there.

#5 Google

The surprise entrant supplying 2.6% of phones – a massive 52.6% increase, admittedly from a very low base. The Pixel 7/Pro/A did well thanks to massive above-the-line advertising and a below-the-line social media campaign and contributed to the loss of Samsung’s high-end sales.

Other category

Had a combined 10.6% of supply and lost 12.7% (mainly to OPPO and Google). In that category is Motorola (Lenovo), which adopted the strategy of having a model in every niche covering from $150 to $1500. Motorola made some excellent phones like the upper-mid and premium Edge 30 series, but its sales came from the e (value) and g (mid) series. Its 2021/22 Razr underperformed (the new 2023 Razr and the 2023 Edge 40 series are excellent).

Huawei (not approved for Australia but still sold here in very small quantities). TCL did poorly and was dropped by most retailers. Its 2021/2022 models were adequate, but the public wanted more.

What’s happening in 2023?

2021/22 was an unusual time with lengthy COVID lockdowns and then almost no restrictions. In no way should it or the 2021 figures be taken as an indication of the future state of the Australian smartphone market in 2023 because:

  • COVID lockdowns in 2021 and 2022 led to more Work-From-Home and the need for better equipment.
  • The period was severely impacted by Reserve Bank interest rate rises starting in May 2022.
  • There was a change in Federal Government and new tighter fiscal policies.
  • 100% depreciation and instant tax write-off incentives are now over.
  • Inflation led to massive food, energy, fuel, and other price rises.
  • Decreased consumer confidence led to massively decreased spending on consumer electronics and a focus on paying rent and putting food on the table. That won’t change in 2023.
  • War in Ukraine and global unrest.

In other words, what happens in 2023 is anyone’s guess. One thing is sure – consumers will seek out entry-level and mid-range phones wanting more features.

IDC Q1 2023


Q1 2023 (January-March) has seen a massive 7.6% year-on-year decline. In 2022, 7,379,000 phones were sold. While that sounds a lot, we do have 25M+ people that tend to replace phones every three years, so it is about right. IDC predicts an overall decline in 2023 to as low as 6.5M units unless economic conditions substantially turn around; Australians will hold on to the phones for longer.

Remember, this is for the first three months of 2023 and are year-on-year figures (comparison to Q1 2022).

#1 Apple had a 0.6% growth with a 44.2% market share. Interestingly sales of the run-out lower-cost iPhone 11 led the market.

#2 Samsung had a 13.2% decline with a 35.1% market share. Despite Samsung resorting to retail price cutting, sales incentives, generous trade-in allowances and a huge above-and-below-the-line marketing campaign, nothing worked and remember; these figures include the Galaxy S23 launch, which should have boosted sales.

#3 OPPO had an 11.6% decline with a 5.4% market share. Its 3-year warranty and the new Flip N2 helped sales. The much-anticipated premium OPPO Find X6/Pro has not been released outside China.

#4 Nokia had an 4.1% increase with a 3.2% market share. Its 2023 models are better, and the 3-year warranty and generous Android OS update and security patch policy are gaining traction.

#5 Google had another huge 44.9% increase with 2.9% market share. Largely due to the power of marketing, but they are good phones.

Others had a 27.1% decline with 9.2% market share (mainly to Google).


Our retail spies tell us that phones costing more than $500 are a hard sell. The most popular phones under $500 are OPPO, Nokia, and Motorola (in that order).

In the $500-1000, the Google Pixel 7/7a, Motorola Edge 30/Pro and OPPO FindX5 and Reno8 5G are popular as they offer better cameras and more power. In the Flip field, OPPO Find N2 has taken substantial sales from Samsung Flip4 and the Motorola 2021/22 Razr, but the new models are coming in Q3, 2023.

Sales of high-end phones like the Samsung Galaxy S23 series, Flip4 and Fold 4, OPPO Find X5 Pro and Motorola Edge 30 Ultra are rare.

Value, not aspiration (need, not want) are the keywords for 2023.

Further reading

Best Android Phones 2023 – $200 to $2000 (guide June 2023 update)

IDC 2022/23 Australian smartphone market