Indian smartphone market being dominated by Chinese brands isn't a new piece of information and the latest report released by a research firm reaffirms this claim. Counterpoint's analysis of mobile phone shipments in Q1 2018 reveals that a major portion of the smartphone market is captured by China-based smartphone vendors with Xiaomi topping the list. For the first time Honor, Huawei's sub-brand, found a place in the list of top five smartphone vendors in India with an overall market share of 3.4 percent. Three of the Chinese brands – Xiaomi, Honor, and OnePlus – managed to hit a triple-digit YoY growth rate at 134 percent, 146 percent, and 112 percent respectively in India. Vivo and OPPO, on the other hand, found their market share in India almost halving in Q1 2018 when compared to the same period last calendar year.
Xiaomi now holds a market share of 31.1 percent in the smartphone segment up from 13.1 percent in Q1 2017. Though, Samsung marginally grew its share from 25.9 percent to 26.2 percent in the same period, the company has been pushed to the second spot with Xiaomi now holding the polar position. The South Korean conglomerate has been on the top spot for several years and has stayed mostly unrivalled until the advent of Chinese players in the recent years. Similar figures were also provided by IDC's report released last February, but Samsung disregarded them stating itself the leader of the Indian smartphone market. While the individual brands may have gained or lost some market share, the overall smartphone shipments in Q1 2018 didn't change YoY, according to the report. The mobile phone market in general, however, grew by 48 percent YoY last quarter, majorly because of the staggering growth in the feature phone segment.
Counterpoint's report adds that there was a close competition between Honor, Lava, Micromax, Nokia, and Lenovo (including Motorola) to grab the fifth spot in the smartphone segment, which ultimately went to Honor. In the premium segment, i.e. above Rs. 30,000 ($452), Samsung has maintained its lead with a 50-percent share, thanks to the recent release of the Galaxy S9 and A8 series. OnePlus closely follows Samsung to hold the second spot with about a 25-percent share of the market. For the feature phone segment, the home-grown brand Reliance Jio captured a 35.8-percent share in Q1 2018. Companies like Samsung, Itel, and Lava have lost significant portions of their respective market share to the JioPhone that became an instant hit soon after its release. Nokia is another brand having a market share of 7.3 percent with the launch of its Nokia 3310.