India was one of the bright spots as global smartphone sales ground to set a halt in 2018. As the US and China saw a slump in smartphone sales quarter after quarter, the Indian handset market brought some cheer by adding more first-time smartphone buyers to the market. Industry analysts have noted that more consumers in India are upgrading their old phone in favor of large-screen smartphones.
According to the analyst report, Chinese smartphone manufacturer Xiaomi is now the top smartphone seller in the country taking the lead over South Korean manufacturer Samsung which controlled a 22 percent of the Indian market share in smartphone shipments during the fourth quarter of 2018.
No. 1 for 1 entire year. We were the #1SmartphoneBrand in India in 2018. The 'M'illennials have spoken.
There's more. Xiaomi was the only smartphone brand to grow its market share (by 47% from 2017). Thank you for all the ❤️ Mi fans.
— Mi India #108MP IS COMING! (@XiaomiIndia) January 28, 2019
In a research report, the Chinese handset maker Xiaomi has a market share of 27 percent. For Samsung, it is a double blow, as it has been dethroned from its top position in both the smartphone as well as feature phone category. This is the first time Samsung has lost its No.1 spot in the Indian mobile handset market since 2012.
Xiaomi even tweeted about its success of being one of the top five brands in India by a whopping growth of 47%. They’ve been the no. 1 brand the entire year; a real battle to mention about thanking the millennials for making this possible so fast and so soon.
What a way to sum up the year gone by! Xiaomi is the only brand among the top 5 to grow in terms of market share by a whopping 47%.
We've been #1SmartphoneBrand for an entire year and we're well equipped to take the battle to the next level.
— Redmi India (@RedmiIndia) January 28, 2019
These findings are part of the Counterpoint Research, according to which India is the fastest-growing smartphone market in the world with a growth of 10 percent, but actually has a higher growth when it came to feature phones, at 11 percent.
India is the second largest market in the smartphone segment after China. It has transcended 430 million smartphone users. – Karn Chauhan, Research Analyst at Counterpoint Research
Further, in the feature phone market, Jio occupied the top position with a whopping 38 percent leap in the market share for the last quarter of 2018, straight from 26 percent in the corresponding quarter in 2017. Jio secured the top position with a 38 percent market share going from 11 percent in 2017. Samsung, which occupied a market share of 21 percent for CY2017, settled down at 12 percent for the year 2018.
Chinese brands now account for almost two-thirds of the Indian mobile phone market, up from 54 percent in 2017. This highlights that while India is a fast-growing smartphone market, feature phones remain relevant for a large section of the population where not only new users shifted towards smartphones, but there was a good upgrade within price tiers as well.