In what seems to be a recurring story, Samsung has lost out to yet another local smartphone manufacturer in their native country. First, it was announced that Xiaomi, the fifth largest smartphone producer in the world, had overtaken Samsung during Q2 in its homeland of China – where there is still much untapped potential for phone sales. Now we get a report from Counterpoint Research that Samsung has fallen from its throne in the Q2 in India, another mecca of potential sales, to hometown manufacturer, Micromax. The Q2 has not been kind to Samsung in terms of sales and profitability – at least compared to the numbers Samsung usually achieves.
As you can plainly see on the graphs below, we are talking about OVERALL Handset ships – where Micromax takes the lead with 16.6-percent, followed by Samsung's 14.4-percent and in third is Microsoft's Nokia with a solid 10.9-percent…Windows Phones have always sold quite well in India.
If we break the down into smartphones and full-featured devices, the numbers come out quite differently. In the smartphone category, Samsung is still reigning supreme with 25.3-percent of the market share followed by Micromax at 19.1-percent and even Motorola comes in fourth at 4.3-percent, followed closely by Nokia at 4.0-percent. It must be noted here that according to the research, Micromax is growing quickly in this segment.
When it comes to full-featured phones only, Micromax takes back the number one spot with 15.2-percent, followed closely by Nokia at 14.7-percent, Karbonn (another India company) at 11.4-percent, and Samsung falls into fourth place at 8.5-percent. It must be noted here that Samsung does not really push a full-feature type device…they are more into the smartphone category, where they still dominate.
Samsung is experiencing slower sales in general – in the U.S. they are getting strong competition from other companies, such as HTC and especially LG…and it looks like the one niche area, the phablet that Samsung practically invented, LG may pose a real threat there with their upcoming G3 Stylus model. It may actually challenge Samsung where they once had virtually no competition.
This should really come as no surprise to anybody – although Samsung's MBA's seemed baffled by it – as it is the cycle of business. No one company can so strongly dominate forever – as other companies start to build competitive devices, often making them better in the long run. Especially local companies, like India's Micromax and China's Xiaomi – they are building a product that their customers want, not to mention a matter of pride in their own country's products.