Samsung ranks behind Xiaomi in Indian smartphone market for Q1

Samsung ranks behind Xiaomi in Indian smartphone market for Q1

According to Counterpoint's "Market Monitor" service, Samsung with 26.2 per cent share was second, followed by Vivo at 5.8 per cent share in the smartphone segment.

Commenting on the sudden growth of feature phones, Tarun Pathak, Associate Director, said, "The demand for JioPhone continued through Q1 2018 as Reliance Jio's feature phone market share raced from 0 per cent previous year to 36 per cent in Q1 2018".

Canalys estimates that the top four vendors accounted for about 75 percent of all smartphone shipments to India, while Xiaomi and Samsung accounting for 56 percent.

"Xiaomi is becoming a force to be reckoned with in India", said Canalys Research analyst Ishan Dutt. The Beijing-based company reportedly owns a market share of over 31 percent, which is 6 percent more than its tally in the final quarter of 2017.

Canalys, in a separate report, claims that Xiaomi has registered an annual shipment growth of 155 percent with shipments passing the milestone of over nine million units in the first quarter. "Xiaomi's Redmi Note 5 and 5 Pro were the most popular models for the Chinese brand, whereas Samsung Galaxy J7 Nxt and J2 (2017) drove volumes for the Korean vendor", Jain said. "All in all, 2018 will be a trying year for smartphone retailers in India", Dutt said.

Except for Samsung, the top five smartphone brands with the largest market share in India in Q1 2018 were of China origin. This now brings to the surface how Xiaomi has taken over the share from other players in the Indian market. These were the fastest growing smartphone brands in Q1 2018. Adding to that Honor (146 percent), Xiaomi (134 percent) and OnePlus (112 percent) were the fastest growing smartphone brands in Q1 2018. Furthermore, the quarter was also marked with less than normal smartphone launches as very few brands refreshed their portfolio, except for Xiaomi and Samsung which benefitted from the new launches. "For smaller vendors, such as Gionee and Lenovo, the pressure on profitability has forced them to relook at their Indian strategies", said Canalys Research Manager Rushabh Doshi. The Korean giant shipped 9.4 million smartphones, nearly 30% more than a year ago quarter.

"Q1 2018 started off with some brands sitting on inventory post the festive season in Q4 2017, which continued throughout the quarter as industry moves to a Full View display portfolio", noted Karn Chauhan, Research Analyst at Counterpoint.

The quarterly rankings of the most popular smartphone brands in India is out. More people in the country are opting for relatively economical smartphone handsets, which is quite evident from the success stories of Chinese players in the market.

"Additionally, Jio has been aggressively promoting JioPhone as "India's free smartphone" though technically, a smart feature phone to attract the large base of 2G voice users which prefer the simpler feature phone form-factor".

"The demand for JioPhone continued through Q1 2018 as Reliance Jio's feature phone market share raced from 0 percent past year to 36 percent in Q1 2018". JioPhone's demand has been bumped up due to the cheaper data rates for the feature phone where a user can enjoy unlimited voice calling and 1GB data per day for the whole month on a Rs 49 plan.

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