Beijing: Chinese internet giant Baidu is geared up to launch its first smartphone next week, as the global mobile market faces record decline amid macro-economic conditions, the media reported on Monday.
The Beijing-based company’s Xiaodu unit, similar to Amazon’s Alexa division, will launch its first smartphone next week, reports Bloomberg, citing sources.
Baidu already sells smart speakers and displays, and calls its DuerOS software a conversational artificial intelligence (AI) system.
The introduction of a smartphone under Baidu would mark the first major Chinese entrant in the congested mobile market in years.
According to the report, Baidu is adding a phone to its portfolio as it builds out a hardware ecosystem to complement its internet services.
According to Counterpoint Research, China’s smartphone sales fell 5 per cent YoY in Q1 2023, reaching the lowest Q1 sales figure since 2014.
However, this was an improvement from the double-digit YoY declines seen in previous quarters as well as a sign of bottoming out.
In Q1 2023, Apple recorded the biggest share in the China smartphone market, increasing sales by 6 per cent YoY in a declining market. Apple’s market share in Q1 came to 19.9 per cent, its highest Q1 share since 2014, while its sales were also the highest Q1 sales since 2015.
OnePlus’ fast growth in the China smartphone market after its high-profile return to the market was the spotlight of Q1. Its sales increased 227 per cent YoY in Q1 with frequent and even aggressive launches of the OnePlus 11 and OnePlus Ace 2 and Ace 2V.