The year 2019 had surprises (& shocks). While the entire economy was lingering around moderate to declining growth, several sectors witnessed a downfall.
The smartphone market even after witnessing a 7% decline was still huge (and dynamic). Can you guess the number of smartphone users in India?
To give an exact number is difficult because a phone is a necessity nowadays. From a basic phone to a highly sophisticated handset, people get one according to their purchasing power.
Just have a rough idea, according to Business Standard, smartphone users in India are expected to be some 859 million by 2022 (from 468 million in 2017). Also, the number doesn’t count basic phones with only calling and texting features.
But by this number, we know one thing that the market is humongous leaving a lot of opportunities for smartphone brands to capture the market share.
Smartphone Brands that Lost market share:
Samsung: 2019 was a bummer year for this smartphone brand. Samsung, for years, has outperformed on all the metrics in the Indian smartphone market but with Chinese smartphone brands coming, the brand lost its light in the Indian market.
By 2020, Samsung’s market share slipped to 3rd place. VIVO surpassed Samsung and now VIVO is the 2nd most popular smartphone brand in India.
There was one time when Samsung competed fiercely with Apple Inc. and it surpassed Apple too, but the brand just couldn’t keep up with the pace of Chinese smartphone brands.
While it enjoyed a market share of more than 25% in previous years, by 2020 Samsung’s market share is merely lingering around 19% trying hard to retain 3rd spot in the top 5 smartphone brands in India.
RealMe: The market share of RealMe was never stable to keep a check on. During the early years of 2019, this smartphone brand shared the same market share with OPPO & VIVO – 12% then after some its market share dropped to 10% while OPPO & VIVO kept on increasing and now it’s said to have a market share of 8%.
From this smartphone brand’s point of view, product placement to product innovation, everything has been correctly done. There is no one reason to quote why it’s market share have been dropped. Sometimes user’s preferences and smartphone hype are also a reason for success.
LG: In 2018. LG smartphones had a market share of around 13% but within 2 years, the smartphone brand is not even on the top 5 smartphones in India.
User’s preferred LG’s smartphones when they have basic use and when purchasing power comes with some restrictions. Vivo and OPPO have eaten up LG’s share as the 2 smartphone brands are rolling out smartphones one after the other giving no space for other companies to showcase their products.
With the same price as LG, people now have a plethora of options for Chinese smartphone brands like Vivo, Oppo, and others.
Apple: Though Apple does not reveal its numbers, it’s believed that Apple Inc in India has lost its markets share to Chinese smartphone brands.
iPhone’s price is one major constraint here. Just note down the price of the current iPhone and then search for Xiaomi, Google’s smartphone. Not only there is a huge difference in price, but the phones offer various other features at less cost.
But iPhone is known for security and brand loyalty. Users once used an iPhone are said to stay loyal to the product. It’s also analyzed that as soon as Apple rolls out its 5G devices, it might gain some market share.
These were (some) smartphone brands that lost market share in India but there are a plethora of other brands that kept losing their market share to others (& others kept losing their market share to some others).
Every year we see one brand surpassing all others, while some brands moving up the ladder (or down the ladder) depending upon how preferable their products are.
Can you guess who are the smartphone brands in 2020 that would disrupt the Indian market this year? With BBK group ruling over the country, it seems nearly impossible to give them a competition in India.