why 2023 may be a pivotal year

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Oppo is a leading brand in the consumer technology landscape and especially in the world of smartphones where it ranks between the fourth and fifth best sellers. In 2023, the group, which is a global giant, has some cards to play to weigh more in France. Here are some things to think about.

Oppo Find X5 Pro // Source: Anthony Wonner – Frandroid

Oppo is an essential brand in the world of smartphones, but not only. Number 4 on the world market and in France, the brand was able to seduce the editorial staff frandroid with its Find X5 Pro that simply won the title of smartphone of the year 2022 in our columns. Beyond that, the brand is not far behind in trying to bring interesting technological innovations here and there to differentiate itself from the competition among which there are brands with a much better established reputation.

The year 2023 is still young and therefore we still have a lot to look forward to from this manufacturer. What will Oppo’s year be like? We cannot answer this question, but we can share with you our expectations for this brand.

Tease foldable smartphones

Foldable smartphone here, foldable smartphone there… We have heard a lot about this new format throughout 2022. But where are they? In France, compared to Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold and Galaxy Z Flip, there are few alternatives apart from Huawei and Motorola models that do not have the same attack force. The other brands preferred to focus first on the Chinese market before possibly trying their hand at this segment in Europe.

Oppo Find N2 Flip // Source: Oppo

However, Oppo’s Find N range holds a lot of promise, which is again attested to by the recent Find N2 we held in hand. Nice format, well camouflaged fold, this device really has its chances against the Galaxy Z Fold 4. However, it is not he who will land in France, but his brother, the Oppo Find N2 Flip. Instead, this foldable model will be a tough opponent for the Galaxy Z Flip 4. We know that a fairly early 2023 launch is planned in Europe, but we don’t yet know exactly when or at what price.

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However, there are good reasons to expect similar quality to other Find Ns, and therefore relevant competition against Samsung. There is no doubt that the challenge will be tempting.

Don’t settle for the high end

Chez frandroidWe highly appreciate Oppo for its premium smartphones, slightly less so in the lower price segments at the mid- and entry-level. The Oppo A57, for example, did not leave us with an unforgettable memory. This impression arises from Oppo’s disinterest in product families that do not belong to the top of the basket.

The brand has also never hidden its strategy of highlighting its technological and material added value in flagship products instead of penetrating the market from below with products of lower value, but which flow better. It’s a listenable speech, but for people potentially interested in the Oppo universe without being able to lay down a big budget, there’s reason to be a bit frustrated.

Oppo A57 // Source: Frandroid – Anthony Wonner

So it would be interesting to see Oppo step up its game in these different sub-$500 segments in the manner of what we’ve already seen in the past with Samsung managing to solidify its Galaxy A range overall. However, in the case of Oppo, we must remember the particular context: the brand belongs to the same group as Realme and OnePlus. The former sits well at the entry level while the latter increasingly strives in the mid-range. Oppo seems willing to stay in this more elite positioning to avoid stepping on the toes of its sister companies.

Take Huawei’s place and gain notoriety

Remember, a few years back until May 2019, before the US put a heavy embargo on it, Huawei was an ogre that kept turning its back on Samsung and Apple in terms of market share. The ambition of the Chinese giant was clear and nothing unreasonable: to become number 1 in the world. The rest of the story, we know. The group is suffering a lot in the smartphone market due to US sanctions. However, since this decline, who is to say that it has really succeeded in taking Huawei’s place?

Xiaomi is number 3 in France and enjoying huge popularity, but it would be hard to say that it replaced Huawei as its identity is largely based on entry- and mid-range, while Huawei’s ultra-high-end smartphones really they had a gift. to tease big fish over 1000 euros. This is where Oppo has a card to play with his ever-successful Find X.

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However, Oppo still has work to do to really be known by the general public. With this in mind, the group sponsors a large number of sporting events such as Roland-Garros and is actively working to develop this “high-end” image that Huawei could, and still does to some extent. However, it takes time to achieve that goal, progress is very gradual.

In 2023, Oppo will have several opportunities to carefully take care of its brand image with a Find X6 Pro that already promises to take photos and, as we mentioned above, a folding smartphone that must have the pertinent weapons to make noise. Also, speaking of the Oppo Find X6 Pro, let’s cross our fingers that the latter finally integrates a slightly more advanced telephoto lens than last year’s x2. Going up to x3 or x5, Oppo, would be a great inspiration to be able to boast of great versatility in this area.

Tick ​​tock, the new Oppo Watch

Oppo makes smartphones, but also other products like connected watches. Sector where France does not seem to deserve special attention from the brand since they gave us a first Oppo Watch under Wear OS in 2021, an Oppo Watch Free with proprietary OS in 2022… and that’s it.

L’Oppo 3 watch. // Source: Oppo

The Oppo Watch 2 has never seen the light of day in France, while the Oppo Watch 3 launched in China already dates from last August and does not seem to have decided to leave its bags here.

For Oppo’s next smartwatch, we would like not to be forgotten this year. Especially since the trend is to create coherent ecosystems between the different devices of the same brand. The clock can obviously play a strategic role here.

A Top 4 spot under threat

As you will have understood, the year 2023 is full of challenges for the number 4 in the world and French. Even keeping this fourth place is not guaranteed. According to Canalys, Vivo and Oppo would be neck and neck with a 9% market share worldwide, while in 2021 Oppo peaked at 11% and Vivo at 10%. The gap is narrowing and therefore the group has recorded a drop in sales of around 20%.

It is still a bit early to cry, but the year is fundamental in every sense of the word for the Chinese group.

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