This represents a more than 50 per cent increase on the 14.2 million units shipped last year. When it looked at the years 2022 to 2027, IDC said it expected a compound annual growth rate of 27.6 per cent, meaning the numbers shipped in 2027 were 48.1 million units.
The company said the foldable segment is doing well against harsh economic conditions.
IDC said the average selling prices of foldables are only dropping slightly and remain in the premium price segments in all regional markets, so don’t expect any budget models coming soon.
IDC said the build quality of foldables had improved along with the overall user experience. It expects more features to be added where the tech is front and centre.
IDC research manager, Mobile Phones Anthony Scarsella, said the foldable phone market finished slightly higher than forecasted as consumers embraced the new form factor.
“A 10 per cent decline in ASP helped the market grow 75.5 per cent in 2022, as foldable devices became more affordable in numerous markets. With new vendors and models joining the race this year, we expect the foldable market to be the one bright spot in 2023 with 50.5 per cent growth, while the total smartphone market contracts 1.1 per cent .”
While the foldable market is seeing good growth, by 2027, foldables are still only expected to account for 3.5 per cent of the market compared to today’s 1.2 per cent.