Recent 5G auctions and the subsequent proliferation of 5G networks by Bharti Airtel and Reliance Jio have increased demand for 5G smartphones, with the sector growing 30% year-on-year in the July-August period. The research firm also noted a sharp rise in premium smartphone shipments during the quarter.
“On the back of recent 5G auctions, 5G smartphone shipments continued to gain momentum during the quarter. Driven by holiday season sales, consumer appetite for 5G, value for money, and premium smartphones saw strong growth,” said Minka Kumari, an analyst. in CMR.
“It is interesting that the premium 5G smartphone segment (above Rs 100,000) has grown by 170% year-on-year,” she added.
This, while shipments in the affordable smartphone segment (below Rs 7,000) fell sharply by 57% year-on-year. However, CMR indicates that consumer demand was strong in the value-for-money segment (Rs 7,000 – Rs 25,000) with 79% of smartphone shipments belonging to this segment.
The premium segment (Rs.25,000-Rs.50,000) grew modestly by 9% YoY, while smartphone prices between Rs.50,000 – Rs.100,000 grew by 39% YoY in the third quarter.
CMR said it expects strong smartphone shipments in the early fourth quarter of 2022 on the back of the festive season momentum. However, he expects continued adverse macroeconomic conditions. The research firm expects annual shipments to be around 160-165 million units, about 10-15 million fewer than the previous estimate.
“Driven by the upcoming major festivals, sales and performances will continue and we expect a slight increase in smartphone shipments in the first half of Q4 202. However, macroeconomic conditions will continue to cast their shadows in the post-Depavali period. Shibra Singh, analyst at CMR, said: We expect further momentum for 5G smartphone shipments driven by strong consumer demand.”
“The premium smartphone segment will continue to resist the trend and see strong shipments. Consumers will seek to switch and upgrade to newer phones,” she added.
Xiaomi continued to hold the number one position in the market with a market share of 22%, despite its shipments declining by 17% year-on-year. Its Poco sub-brand also saw a 38% YoY decline in shipments in the previous quarter. Redmi 9A Sport, Redmi 10 (2022) and Redmi 10A were the best-selling models.
Samsung ranked second, according to the research firm, with a 20% market share even as its shipments fell 15% year over year. CMR said the company’s focus on the value-for-money 5G smartphone segment has enabled its market growth, with 5G smartphone shipments posting a massive 88% year-over-year growth.
Realme ranked third in the third quarter with a 14% market share, while its shipments were down 17% year-over-year. Realme C35, Realme C30, Realme C33 and Narzo 50i were the most popular models and captured most of the company’s market share.
Vivo ranked fourth, with a market share of 14%, but saw a sharp drop in shipments of 28% year over year. Vivo T1, Vivo T1 Pro and Vivo Y75 5G models made up the bulk of the shipments.
Oppo was the fifth largest player in the market with a market share of 10% with Oppo A16e, Oppo A16k and Oppo A55 making up the bulk of shipments.
In the premium segment, Apple captured 4% of the market increasing shipments by 8%. The iPhone 12, iPhone 13, and iPhone 14 series contributed the majority of the company’s shipments during the third quarter. CMR indicated that 76% of Apple’s shipments were in the Rs 50,000 – Rs 10,000 range.
The Transsion Group, which includes brands such as Infinix, Itel and Tecno, saw shipments drop 24% year over year, which also includes feature phones. On the other hand, OnePlus saw shipments grow by 30% year-on-year with the OnePlus Nord series accounting for 79% of the company’s shipments.
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