Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi has once again emerged as the top smartphone vendor in India in the fourth quarter of 2018, while Samsung continues to struggle at the second spot. Throughout 2018, India saw total smartphone shipment reach close to 330 million units, capturing 44 percent of total volume. Feature phones, on the other hand, grew faster than smartphones, thanks to JioPhone, a recent report from Counterpoint Research has revealed.
India is the second largest smartphone market in the world after China. It has just surpassed 430 million smartphone users. However, this accounts for just 45% of the potential total addressable market for smartphones; India is underpenetrated relative to many other markets, Karn Chauhan, Research Analyst at Counterpoint Research said.
Watch: Xiaomi Redmi Note 6 Pro First Look
This was one the key reasons for its growth in 2018 where not only new users shifted towards smartphones but there was a healthy upgrade within price tiers, especially from entry-level smartphones to the mid-tier segment, Chauhan added
Xiaomi recorded higher ever shipments in India in 2018, thanks to its product portfolio and expansion in offline markets, thanks to Mi preferred partners. In Q4 2018, Xiaomi had a market share of 27 percent, a 2 percent rise compared to Q4 2017. Samsung, on the other hand, had a market share of 22 percent in Q4 2018, a decline of 1 percent compared to Q4 2017.
Vivo has taken the third spot with 9 percent market share in Q4 2018, seeing a rise of 3 percent compared to Q3 2018. Realme, which started its operations in Q2 2018, has made it to the top 5, taking the fourth spot with a market share of 8 percent. It has managed to reach 4 million users faster than any other brand. The parent company, Oppo, takes the fifth spot with 7 percent market share, a rise of 1 percent compared to Q4 2017.
However, the highlight has been the feature phone market, where Jio has managed to come up as a market leader, with an overall market share of 21 percent in 2018. This is the first time the feature phone market grew faster than the smartphone market. This highlights that while India is a fast-growing smartphone market, feature phones remain relevant for a large section of the population. Reliance Jio captured 38% of the feature phone segment in just over year with its compelling value proposition compared to normal 2G feature phones, Tarun Pathak, Associate Director, said.
The Jio Monsoon Hungama offer which focuses on upgrading 2G feature phone users helped the telco to drive sales in the second half of 2018. Samsung managed to take the second place in the feature phone market as well, with a market share of 14 percent in Q4 2018.