TECHNOLOGY

Samsung, Xiaomi, and Vivo Help Indian Smartphone Market to Regain Momentum: Report

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India is one of the fastest-growing markets for consumer technology products, driven by smartphones and laptops. A new report from research firm Canalys reveals that smartphone sales in the country grew by 20% in the last quarter of 2023. The growth is being led by Samsung, Xiaomi, and Vivo, which have emerged as the top three phone brands in India.

Over 148 million smartphones were sold in the country throughout 2023, out of which the majority came in the second half due to festive season sales. Offline retail chains have played an important role in the growth of phone sales, according to Canalys.

Samsung remained the top player in India in Q4 2023, with its wide variety of phones in each price range. While the highlight of the year has been the Galaxy S23 Series with its superior cameras, Samsung’s sales are majorly driven by its midrange Galaxy A and Galaxy M devices. These two series are popular in both online and offline segments. Samsung’s presence in the offline market with its exclusive stores and retail chain partnerships with Croma, Reliance Digital, etc. help them to streamline their sales in almost every segment.

canalys market share india brand wise

The report further mentions that Xiaomi’s revised focus on its budget and midrange smartphones has helped the company to rebound, after a slowdown in the last few months. The Redmi 12 5G and the Redmi 13C Series had a huge impact on strengthening their core grip in the budget phones segment.

Vivo is currently the third biggest player in India, thanks to its midrange and budget devices from the V, T, and Y-Series. The Vivo V29 Series is extremely popular in the Rs 30,000 segment for its curved display and cameras, while the Vivo T-Series (not the music company) has good sales in the Rs 15,000 price range.

Although Apple is the most popular brand for premium smartphones in India, the overall sales numbers of iPhones are still not enough for the company to be among the top 3 in the country. But it still had a significant market share of 7% in 2023.

The new iPhone 15 Series with a better display design and USB-C, and the booming sales of iPhone 14 and iPhone 13 Series during the Flipkart Big Billion Days sale helped Apple to penetrate further in the Indian market. The company also opened two new Apple Exclusive Offline stores in Mumbai and Delhi, which have been clocking record-breaking monthly sales.

Realme is also gripping hard onto its position in the market. The company has also restructured its portfolio, by focusing on its number series in the midrange segment, Narzo for budget, and C-Series for entry-level devices. Realme also confirmed that the company will soon bring its flagship GT Series to India by 2024.

The growth of smartphone sales in India is also being helped by easier financing options, with retailers and e-commerce platforms offering No-cost EMI options for up to 9 months. Companies like Xiaomi and Nokia have also introduced their own financing options for offline stores, to make smartphones more accessible to users.

Canalys says that the Indian market will continue to grow in single digits in 2024. The demand for affordable 5G smartphones is expected to grow in the next few months, as Jio and Airtel are looking to monetize 5G networks.

Phone makers have already kickstarted the year with new launches. Xiaomi has launched its Redmi Note 13 Series, which should soon be followed by the Redmi 13 Series at a lower price point. Samsung also unveiled its Galaxy S24 Series, which is expected to sell well with its new AI features.

iQOO could help Vivo to increase its strength in the premium segment, as the company has priced its iQOO 12 flagship very aggressively. It is one of the cheapest phones with the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset. OnePlus will also launch its OnePlus 12 Series next week, in which the OnePlus 12R is expected to be a popular flagship killer.

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