Micromax Launches Windows Smartphones To Win Over Cut-Throat Competition In India! Phone in India: Attempt to Rip-Off Android And Feature phone Market!

Owing to its previous announcement of launch of budget phones in India, Microsoft Corporation (ADR) (NASDAQ:MSFT) has kept its promise. Micromax has introduced two Windows Phones yesterday in India – the Canvas Win W121 and Canvas Win W092. With this, Micromax has become the first Indian vendor to launch Windows powered mobile phones in the country. Being entry-level smartphones, they will give direct competition to Nokia Lumia 520, Nokia Lumia 525 and also, recently introduced, the Android powered Moto E.

Before we actually move forward to discuss the strategy of Microsoft and impact of the launch on the market and other vendors, lets have a look on the specification of new entrants:

Canvas Win W121

  • 5-inch HD IPS display
  • 8 megapixel rear camera (with LED Flash)
  • 2 megapixel front facing camera
  •  Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 quad-core processor
  • 1 GB RAM
  • 8 GB in-built storage (expandable upto 32 GB)
  • Dual-Sim
  • Price  INR 9,500/- (US$160)

Canvas Win W092

  • 4-inch IPS WVGA display
  • 5 megapixel rear camera (with LED Flash)
  • 0.3 megapixel front facing camera
  •  Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 quad-core processor
  • 1 GB RAM
  • 8 GB in-built storage (expandable upto 32 GB)
  • Dual-Sim
  • Price  INR 6,500/- (US$110)


Microsoft-Micromax Phone: A Win-Win Deal !

“We’ll reach price points that are very industry competitive for 7, 8, 10-inch devices. They will really surprise you. Last year, we were in the 3s, 4s, 500 dollars. This year, we’ll be 1s, 2s, 3s, ” said Nick Parker, vice president of OEM partners, Microsoft.

Microsoft has waived license fees of Windows Phone 8 OS on mobile devices with screen size less than 9-inch. All such announcements are Microsoft’s deliberate moves to increase its smartphone market share. By 2018, the Windows Phone OS market share is expected to double from 3.5% in 2014 to 6.4%. Microsoft, in collaboration with Micromax, is leaving no stone unturned in garnering the huge opportunity in indian mobile market and, more importantly, in ripping off the Android’s market share. Therefore, Micromax’s venture into the Windows Phone market brings it a step closer to its global dreams. After marking its footprint in indian market, the homegrown mobile phone vendors Micromax is trying to make its presence felt in the Russian and European market.

Micromax is already riding high in the indian smartphone market with its Android powered devices. After witnessing Motorola’s immense success with its Moto series smartphones, there is no reason why Micromax can’t tread the same path. With Rs.6,500 price tag and almost same specifications, the Canvas Win W092 can easily replicate the success of Moto E. Both the smartphones can easily be best picks for people purchasing their first mobile phones or switching from feature phones to smartphones.

Micromax Avoiding Already-Crowded Android Market

The Android market is witnessing an increasing penetration worldwide with every second device expected to be Android powered by 2015. The already-crowded Android market is driven by 700 smartphone vendors, globally. Such a lofty penetration and dominance of Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (KRX:005930), with 35% market share in Q1 2014, in the market has led the vendors to look out for other avenues. The launch of Windows powered Micromax devices is a strategic move on part of Microsoft. In Q1 2014, Micromax has emerged as the second largest smartphone OEM market in India with 15% market share.

India is a price-sensitive country as  sales of smartphones are largely driven by the price than the hardware specifications or features. In Q1 2014, more than three-fourth smartphones shipped in India carried a price tag below Rs.12,000. The entry-level smartphone market in india has become too crowded with the introduction of $25 smartphone by Mozilla, $117 Moto E smartphone, $135 smartphone from Obi and low-priced smartphones from Gionee and player-in-waiting Xiaomi. The declining average selling price (ASP) of smartphones has made the situation more competitive. In addition to that, only 10% of mobile users are hooked up with smartphones and the this percentage is unlikely to reach 50% by the end of 2018. These scenarios are forcing smartphone vendors in india to add more flavours to its smartphone offerings and keep the balls rolling towards positive growth.

Barring China, India boasts of the maximum mobile subscriber base of 933 million. Considering 90% of mobile users are yet to migrate to smartphones, entry-level smartphone market would become a key-to-success for all vendors in India. By extending their reach beyond Android OS, vendors are trying to add more flavours  to their smartphone offerings.

For those who are looking further to know more about Micromax Canvas Win W121 and Canvas Win W092, here is a hands-on review video from iGyaan:


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