The Smartphone industry in India is booming rapidly. Over a period of three months ended June 2014, the demand for smartphone grew at 68%, while those for feature phones fell by 16%. With the launch of budget smartphones, the future of the feature phone market in India seems bleak. The population of India stands at 1.27 billion while the smartphone penetration, against mobile, is still less than 10%, leaving a huge room for growth. The native vendors for mobile devices are leaving no stone unturned in cashing on this opportunity and this has led Micromax to become the leading mobile brand in India leapfrogging Samsung and Nokia in Q2 2014. The Counterpoint Technology Market Research has found out some interesting results in the mobile market of India in the Q2 2014 based on shipments and vendor shares.
Micromax: The Leading Mobile Phone Brand In India
Micromax has leapfrogged Samsung to become the leading mobile phone brand, includes feature phone and smartphone, in India. Though the results seem skeptical to many since in Q1 2014, Samsung accounted for almost one-fifth of the mobile handset market, while in the last quarter, its share dropped to a mere 14.4% despite aggressive marketing campaigns. The Micromax’s feat can be attributed to its consistent sales in both the feature phones and smartphone segment. India being a price-sensitive smartphone market, native mobile vendors gain a strong foothold as they appeal to the local sensibilities of the people.
In the smartphone segment, Samsung Electronics Co Ltd (KRX:005930) continues to lead the pack in India, accounting for more than one-fourth of the smartphone market. This is a steep decline, though, as the company’s smartphone market share in India dived from one-third in the previous quarter to one-forth in Q2 2014. But that’s not all for Samsung; the narrowing lead on following Micromax in Smartphone segment within a span of three months is another major concern for the Korean smartphone giant, while the other smartphone vendors are left much behind.
Another marketing research firm Canalys has also released the latest sales number of smartphone shipments in India and claims that due to the increasing number of sales of the flagship devices of Motorola and Micromax, these companies have showcased an impressive performance in the second quarter of this year. Owing to exploded demand of Moto E and Moto G, Motorola has more than doubled its smartphone shipments in Q2 2014, resulting in joining the list of Top 5 smartphone vendors in India in Q2 2014.
The mobile market in India has gone the Chinese way; the native mobile vendors are making their presence felt locally as well as globally. Micromax became the tenth largest handset brand in terms of mobile phone shipment volumes. With the advent of OEMs like Xiaomi, Huawei, Asus and Motorola, all the leading smartphone vendors in India some serious cut-throat competition can be expected in the second half of this year. However, these brands will have to focus aggressively on their marketing, distribution and post-sales support if they wish to survive in the long-run against the likes of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), Samsung and Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK).
Feature phones still hold the greatest share of the market in India. In Q1 2014, 72% of the total mobile sales were driven by feature phones, led by Nokia. However, in Q2 2014, homegrown Micromax overtook Nokia to become the largest feature phone vendor in India.
- Micromax and Motorola are two brands to watch out for in the mobile handset market of India.
- Apple and Samsung need to rework on their strategies to survive in the big developing mobile markets – India and China.
- The emergence of Xiaomi along with few other Chinese players in India market is also a big concern for dominant smartphone players.