KEY POINTS TO NOTE
According to the latest study report from Counterpoint’s Market Monitor, India’s smartphone shipments increased by 23% in the first quarter of the calendar year 2021, to over 38 million units. This was the country’s highest-ever first-quarter shipping, owing to new product releases, promotions, and financing programmes, as well as pent-up demand from the previous year.
“India’s smartphone industry continued its spectacular run in Q1 2021, with record sales for the third straight quarter, riding on pent-up demand,” stated Senior Research Analyst Prachir Singh. “The start of a vaccination campaign in the country also boosted consumer confidence.”
The second wave of COVID, which is stronger and more severe than the first, is expected to reduce demand in the near future, according to Counterpoint.
“These figures should be interpreted with care since a second, more virulent wave of COVID-19 is now circulating in the nation and is expected to have an effect in the future quarters,” he said. “As a result of the current COVID-19 wave and consequent lockdowns, consumer demand will suffer.”
Xiaomi, a Chinese smartphone brand, led from the front, maintaining its number one position despite a 5-percentage-point decrease in marketshare from 31% in Q1 2020 to 26% in Q1 2020. Despite this, the firm, which had lost its lead in the third quarter of 2020 due to rising anti-China sentiment in the nation, remained comfortably ahead of Samsung, its closest competitor. Xiaomi saw a 4 percent increase in overall volume throughout the quarter.
Xiaomi’s market share had shrunk by three percentage points to 23% in Q3 of last year, allowing Samsung to take the lead for the first time in two years at 24%. The lead, however, was short-lived. As anti-China sentiment faded, Xiaomi surged ahead with a market share of 26% in the next quarter. According to data from the first quarter of 2021, Chinese companies that dominate the Indian smartphone market have restored regular operation.
Despite this, the South Korean consumer electronics behemoth had the highest volume increase of 52 percent over the time, increasing its market share from 16 to 20% and putting it ahead of Vivo. With the new M02 series and many other releases, Samsung’s success was fueled by its emphasis on the affordable sector. The A32, A52, and A72 were added to the A-series, while the M12 was added to the M-series. It also debuted its newest flagship Galaxy S21 series sooner than usual. The company tried to acquire the market offline after being active on online platforms in 2020.
“In the March quarter, Chinese brands controlled 75% of the market. Xiaomi took the lead with 26% of the market, followed by Samsung, vivo, realme, and OPPO “Shilpi Jain, a research analyst, agreed. “Xiaomi recently added additional EMS partners to its manufacturing capabilities, which helped the company sustain high shipments throughout the quarter. To boost customer demand, all of the big companies are concentrating on new product releases. During the quarter, Samsung continued to introduce a large number of new products in its Galaxy M-series, Galaxy F-series, and Galaxy S21 series.”
On the strength of high sales of JioPhone under its new model and subsequent promotions, the feature phone category grew by 14% year over year. This category is likewise dominated by a Chinese company, itel, which has a 21% market share, similar to Xiaomi in smartphones.
In comparison to the previous quarter, India’s total mobile phone market increased 19%.