Samsung is planning to release a broad range of Android smartphones specifically designed to cater to consumers in India, the company’s Global Vice President Asim Warsi said earlier this month in an interview with the Indo-Asian News Service. No specific models have been named by the executive who only said the tech giant’s plans for the South Asian country span all price segments. Samsung historically had a strong presence in India’s entry-level market but the commercial performance of its locally sold products is often inversely proportional to their price tags. That phenomenon is believed to be a result of the ultra-competitive state of India’s smartphone market, the world’s last major bastion of growth for virtually all phone makers.
The South Korean original equipment manufacturer now appears to be preparing to pay more attention to the mid-range and premium segments to combat its continuously strengthening rivals, most of all Xiaomi. The Beijing-based company has been outpacing Samsung’s growth in India in the last several years and could overtake it in terms of annual sales as early as this year, according to multiple industry trackers. Samsung is now seeking to deliver new India-focused devices in the coming quarters and will be pushing them through both its online and offline distribution channels, Mr. Warsi said. The newly released Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus should also help Samsung combat the growing threat presented by OnePlus in the high-end segment of India’s smartphone market, with the OEM confirming it has high expectations from its latest Android flagships.
The Galaxy S9 series officially started retailing in the country yesterday, starting at the equivalent of $890. Mobile service providers Airtel and Reliance Jio partnered with Samsung in order to support LTE carrier aggregation on the new phablets, allowing them to enjoy higher wireless speeds and more reliable 4G connections. The Galaxy S10 lineup that’s likely to be announced early next year is expected to consist of Samsung‘s first 5G-enabled handsets, though large-scale 5G buildouts in India aren’t expected to start before the next decade.