Foldable Smartphone Shipments Reach New Highs in Q3 Driven by Samsung Launches

Foldable smartphone shipments soared to record levels in Q3 2023, according to a new report by DSCC. Shipments rose 215% QoQ and 16% YoY to 7 million units, exceeding expectations.

Foldable smartphone shipments. (Source: DSCC)

The growth was fueled by the launch of Samsung’s latest foldable flagships, the Galaxy Z Flip 5 and Z Fold 5. Samsung maintained its lead in the foldable market with a 72% share, although down from 86% last year as competitors like Huawei and Honor increased shipments. The Z Flip 5 and Z Fold 5 were the top-selling models, accounting for 45% and 24% of shipments respectively.

Foldable smartphone brand share. (Source: DSCC)

DSCC forecasts a seasonal decline of 35% in Q4’23, although shipments will still rise 47% versus last year. Samsung’s share is expected to fall to 42% as brands like Huawei and Honor gain ground. Huawei’s Mate X5 foldable could become the second best-selling model behind the Z Flip 5. For full-year 2023, foldable phone shipments are forecast to increase 23% to 15.8 million units.

On the component side, foldable panel shipments hit 8.9 million in Q3, up 106% sequentially and 41% annually, another record. Samsung Display retained its lead but saw its share fall from 91% to 74% as Chinese panel makers BOE and Visionox ramped up production. BOE is expected to overtake Samsung in Q4 based on orders from major Chinese brands.

Foldable smartphone panel shipments. (Source: DSCC)
Foldable smartphone panel supplier unit share. (Source: DSCC)