Info-tech

India becomes 2nd largest smartphone market; beats US

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on January 25, 2020 Published on January 25, 2020

The Indian smartphone market has surpassed the US to become the second largest market globally, succeeded by China, who tops the list.

This was made possible by the exponential growth of Chinese brands in the country.

According to a report by Counterpoint Research, India’s shipments reached 158 million in the calendar year 2019 with a 7% year-on-year (YoY) growth,

The Counterpoint’s Market Monitor service revealed that Xiaomi continues to be the top in the game with 28% market share in 2019, with Samsung coming in second with 21% and Vivo came in third with a 16% market share.

“Although the rate of growth for smartphone market hit single digit for the first time ever on an annual basis, India is underpenetrated relative to many other markets with 4G penetration in terms of subscribers being around 55 per cent,” Tarun Pathak, Associate Director, Counterpoint told media.

Over the past four years, Xiaomi, Vivo, and OnePlus have grown 15 times, 24 times and 18 times, respectively. While, Samsung’s shipments have actually shown a 5% (YoY) decline in 2019.

Speaking about China's expanding footprint in the tech world, Anshika Jain, Research Analyst at Counterpoint said, “Chinese brands share hit a record 72% for the year 2019 as compared to 60% share a year ago. This year, we have seen all major Chinese players expanding their footprint in offline and online channels to gain market share. For instance, Xiaomi, Realme, and OnePlus have increased their offline sales while brands like Vivo have expanded their online reach with Z and U series.”

She further mentioned that the growth highlights that OEMs are mature enough to capture the next wave of growth and expand their operations in India.

“This is the first time Samsung transitioned to a completely new portfolio targeting different channels (offline with A series and online with M series). However, it needs to double its efforts to keep the momentum going,” the report noted.

According to the report, itel emerged as the number one feature phone brand in Q4 2019, followed by Samsung and Lava.

While the smartphone market witnessed stable YoY growth, the feature phone market registered a steep decline of nearly 42% YoY in 2019 and 38 % (YoY) in Q4 2019.

“This is due to slowdown in the new shipments from Reliance Jio. However, the players such as itel, Lava, Nokia and Micromax registered positive annual growth despite the overall segment declined showing the untapped potential of the market,” the report analysed.

Published on January 25, 2020
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