Samsung's Grip On The Indian Smartphone Market Is Weakening

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Samsung happens to be the number one smartphone manufacturer in the world, and it has been dominating the industry for many years, with its only major competitor being Apple, for the most part of the decade. However, in recent years, many smartphone manufacturers have been emerging, especially companies from China, such as Huawei, OPPO, Xiaomi, OnePlus and Lenovo. These Chinese manufacturers have been flooding emerging markets such as India, and other Asian countries, and the population has swung in favor of Chinese smartphones due to the fact that they are affordable and come feature packed, considering the price point of most Chinese smartphones.

In India, Samsung remains the top smartphone vendor in the country, but its market share has been declining over the years. According to research company Counterpoint, back in 2015, Samsung accounted for 30 percent of India's smartphone market in terms of shares, but that figure has dropped significantly to just 21 percent in November 2016. On the other hand, Chinese smartphone vendors commanded a 50 percent share of the Indian smartphone market collectively in the same month, making it the biggest share ever taken out of India's $10 billion smartphone market. This represents a rapid increase from the initial 19 percent these Chinese companies held just over a year ago. When Chinese brands first emerged, they were associated with low quality handsets which could fail anytime, but that has now changed, and most Chinese brands produce quality and premium smartphones at lower prices along with innovative features like batteries with bigger capacities, and selfie cameras with a flash. Chinese manufacturers have also been able to capture the Indian market by running sponsorship campaigns as well as getting endorsements from popular local celebrities.

Counterpoint also mentions that in the $120 to $440 mid-range smartphone segment, Chinese manufacturers have managed to pull away from Samsung and have now doubled their market share to 68 percent. This is all while Samsung's has seen a 14% dip in their own market share for the same region since November of 2015. However, the South Korean brand is not the only manufacturer losing market ground to Chinese manufacturers, as Indian manufacturers are feeling the heat too. Indian brands such as Micromax, Lava and Karbon now hold less than 20 percent of the market collectively, compared to the 40 percent they held over a year ago.

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