In context: The CAICT has traditionally published Android phone sales as part of the data it shares. With that data and some simple math, one could also deduce iPhone sales. This time around, however, the CAICT didn't do that so we don't have a clear breakdown of individual platform performance. Perhaps this was at Apple's request?

The smartphone industry is showing signs of recovery following a dip in shipments and sales due to the global Covid-19 pandemic.

According to the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology (CAICT), a state-backed think tank, nearly 41 million handsets were shipped from Chinese factories to local vendors last month (40.8 million, to be exact). That's up from 34.8 million during the same period a year ago, an increase of more than 17 percent year-over-year.

The smartphone industry as a whole, along with much of the global economy, took a nose dive in the first quarter due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Uncertainty regarding the immediate future as well as layoffs prompted many to put discretionary spending on hold. Now that things are getting back to normal in China, spending is ramping up.

Some of what we are seeing is no doubt pent-up demand from March that spilled over into April and it could continue into May, especially considering Apple just launched a new iPhone outside of its usual September window.

Masthead credit: Sorbis, Day2505