Trends in the In­dian smart­phone in­dus­try

DQ Channels - - Front page - Au­thored by KEVIN XU, CEO, Zopo Mo­bile

Since its emer­gence in late 1990’s, the mo­bile phone in­dus­try in In­dia has grown by leaps and bounds over the years. From just few 100 to over mil­lions of users, the in­dus­try has wit­nessed mas­sive growth and de­vel­op­ment, ow­ing to in­creas­ing de­mand for mo­bile de­vices. Over the years, con­stant de­vel­op­ment and tech­no­log­i­cal in­no­va­tion fa­cil­i­tated a new eco­sphere of mo­bile phones, viz. Smart­phones that are slowly chang­ing the way one per­ceives telecom­mu­ni­cat­ing de­vices.

Smart­phones are re­ferred to as mo­bile de­vices that have a touch­screen in­ter­face, en­dowed with many fea­tures, which are ca­pa­ble of per­form­ing high qual­ity com­put­ing func­tions with just a sin­gle touch or tap of a but­ton. Peo­ple can ac­cess In­ter­net for any kind of in­for­ma­tion, pay their bills, shop on­line, and keep in touch with their so­cial cir­cle on the go. Its ad­vent has cre­ated a greater de­mand for high qual­ity fea­ture phones in the In­dian sub­con­ti­nent, cre­at­ing a big­ger mar­ket for many mo­bile brands to ex­ploit and reach out to po­ten­tial buy­ers in the country.

In­dia is one of the fastest grow­ing economies in the world. Its con­stant progress has fa­cil­i­tated growth in var­i­ous sec­tors through tech­no­log­i­cal ad­vance­ments, one of them be­ing the Smart­phone in­dus­try.

Ac­cord­ing to Statista, an on­line statis­tics por­tal, In­dia’s smart­phone user base is es­ti­mated to reach around 204.1 mil­lion by the end of this year. In the next 2 years, smart­phone pen­e­tra­tion in In­dia is ex­pected to in­crease by 20%. Helmed by tech­no­log­i­cal in­no­va­tion, the In­dian consumer is spoilt for choice with a wide va­ri­ety of smart­phone mod­els to choose from in ev­ery price range. With so much growth in the in­dus­try, many smart­phone com­pa­nies, es­pe­cially from China, are en­ter­ing the In­dian mar­ket to in­crease their brand’s cus­tomer outreach and in the process max­i­mize their busi­ness growth.

Ever since the In­dian smart­phone mar­ket emerged as a promis­ing ven­ture, many Chi­nese com­pa­nies have been try­ing to seize the op­por­tu­nity to be­come one of the big­gest smart­phone brands in the Sub­con­ti­nent. It has been re­ported that In­dia is one of the emerg­ing smart­phone mar­kets in the world, along with the Mid­dle East and other South-Asian coun­tries. In­spired by the same, many brands from neigh­bor­ing country China are at­tempt­ing to ven­ture in the In­dian mar­ket to max­i­mize their reach and of­fer greater fea­tures to the In­dian au­di­ence. The sud­den ar­rival of such brands are also prov­ing to be in­stru­men­tal in fur­ther­ing the cause of the ‘Dig­i­tal In­dia’ cam­paign, that will help in pro­vid­ing ba­sic in­ter­net fa­cil­i­ties in ru­ral ar­eas, and cre­ate a dig­i­tally lit­er­ate so­ci­ety in the country.

Since there has been a sud­den in­flux of Chi­nese smart­phone man­u­fac­tur­ers in In­dia, there’s bound to be cut throat com­pe­ti­tion be­tween them. Most In­dian cus­tomers come from an up­per mid­dle-class back­ground, so nat­u­rally they look for prod­ucts that give them max­i­mum sat­is­fac­tion and value for money. It is this rea­son that com­pels most brands to mar­ket on their smart­phone’s af­ford­abil­ity fac­tor, with­out com­pro­mis­ing on fea­tures and spec­i­fi­ca­tions.

The lat­est trend in the In­dian smart­phone mar­ket is de­mand for greater 4G pen­e­tra­tion in tier II and tier III cities, along with some ru­ral re­gions. En­sued by the same, some Chi­nese com­pa­nies who have re­ceived fa­vor­able feed­back from In­dian cus­tomers, are think­ing of set­ting up their own man­u­fac­tur­ing units in the country to fur­ther ac­cel­er­ate their brand’s growth and suc­cess. With so much in­vest­ment com­ing in from China, it can be con­cluded for now that the Chi­nese smart­phone wave is here to stay, and will only help in fur­ther­ing the progress of the In­dian econ­omy through in­no­va­tive tech­nol­ogy.

Most In­dian cus­tomers come from an up­per mid­dle-class back­ground, so nat­u­rally they look for prod­ucts that give them max­i­mum sat­is­fac­tion and value for money

Kevin Xu, CEO, Zopo Mo­bile

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