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IDC interview: How will iPhone X and other premium handsets change the market in Malaysia?

AvantiKumar | Sept. 18, 2017
In this Computerworld Malaysia 'rapidfire' interview, IDC Asia Pacific’s Jensen Ooi offers some insights on current state of the premium handset sector in Malaysia.

Apple iPhone X (official)

Photo (Apple official):  iPhone X


  Just two years ago, market analyst firm International Data Corporation (IDC) said that its  mobile phone and tablet trackers pointed to a positive picture for smart devices in Malaysia and that demand "will continue to be healthy in 2015 despite the implementation on 1 April 2015 of the Goods and Services Tax (GST)."

"In 2015, positive growth in the smart devices will be led by smartphones as the dominant smart device with a forecast growth of 27 percent while tablets will grow by 3 percent in Malaysia," said Jensen Ooi, senior market analyst for client devices at IDC Asia/Pacific had said during a group briefing in Kuala Lumpur (2 April 2015).

According to IDC Asia/Pacific's Mobile Phone Tracker back in 2014Q4, and IDC Asia/Pacific Tablet Tracker 2014Q4, almost 10 million units of smart devices were shipped into Malaysia with smartphones outnumbering tablets by a ratio of nearly four to one.

IDC surmised that consumers' usage patterns and hardware demand had "fuelled a strong growth of 40 percent year-over-year (YoY) for smartphones while tablets, which were at healthy levels in 2013 declined by 5.4 percent YoY."

Another C-level IDC briefing (May 2015) in Kuala Lumpur, based on Enterprise Mobility MaturityScape research, continued the optimistic tone as Malaysian enterprises were seen to be "still in early days of the mobile adoption curve."

[For Malaysia IT Industry insights from IDC, see -  This is how Malaysia's ICT industry will transform in the next three years: IDC and Deep Dive into Malaysia's Digital Economy with MDEC CEO Dato' Yasmin Mahmood - Part 1  and of course this year's major IT industry roundup - What's really in store for Malaysia's IT industry in 2017? ]

Changing picture

"Smartphone penetration rate in Malaysia has reached a certain stage where accessibility and enhanced mobility allow for more effective business processes," said IDC's research manager, Telecommunications, Alfie Amir. "Enterprises today are prepared to advance to the next stage, have better strategic approaches of mobility deployment and recognise the importance of internal mobile applications. It is safe to say mobility solutions are critical for Malaysian businesses."

"There has been 'a slight progression' compared to last year with more enterprises implementing mobility solutions and focusing on improving internal processes," he said. "Enterprise mobility adoption in Malaysia showed signs of progress, but remained firmly in the early 'Opportunistic' phase, where the focus is still primarily on rolling out and supporting devices. The biggest movers were Hong Kong and to a lesser extent, China."

According to that study, enterprises had started focusing on "more advanced operation processes and many have launched horizontal business applications. Enterprises have also started looking more seriously at security threats and investment in IT implementation."


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