India to Have Over 700m Smartphone Users by 2022: CounterpointGadgets & Mobiles

September 28, 2018 17:22
India to Have Over 700m Smartphone Users by 2022: Counterpoint

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Over a billion smartphones will be sold in India in the next four years, taking the number of users to outstrip 700 million by 2022, according to a Counterpoint Research.

The market research firm added that mid-range smartphones (roughly Rs 14,000 - Rs 29,000) will grow 20 percent (year-on-year) in 2018 and by almost four times during the following five years to make it one of the most significant smartphone segments in India.

The sales volume sweet spot is moving from sub-$150 (nearly Rs 10,000) segment towards mid-tier as many features and capabilities common among flagship models, increasingly diffuse through to these lower price bands, noted Counterpoint's white paper on "India Mid-Tier Smartphone Segment and opportunity for SoC players".

"Features such as full-screen displays, dual-cameras, biometric security and support for Artificial Intelligence (AI) are beginning to make in-roads to the mid-range. They will become widespread over the next few years," said Tarun Pathak, Associate Director at Counterpoint Research.

Galore of these advanced features will be enabled and enhanced through the evolution of the underlying System-on-Chip (SoCs) and other components.

"These features will help OEMs to differentiate their offerings in the mid-tier segment at a time when overall smartphone innovation is perceived to have plateaued," Pathak added.

After China, India is the second largest smartphone marketplace in the world. China has just surpassed 400 million smartphone users.

Although, this accounts for simply 44 percent of the potential entire addressable market for smartphones as the country is underpenetrated relative to countless other markets.

"Part of this lack of development can be attributed to the poor relative development of data-capable mobile networks and high data pricing. Upstart operator, Reliance Jio, has catalyzed a rapid shift toward 4G LTE, together with much more accessible data pricing," noted Research Director Neil Shah.

Looking at the competitive environment, the top five brands contributed to a 92 percent share of the mid-tier segment in India.

In the first of 2018 Samsung, Vivo, Apple, OPPO, and Huawei were the leading brands.

"However, we expect competition to increase in the segment as more brands enter including Xiaomi, Asus, Nokia HMD and others," said the white paper.

The role of SoC players is critical to unlocking the prospective of the mid-tier market sections.

If done with success, we believe the mid-tier segments will grow almost four times in volume over the next five years in India. To enable this growth, cutting-edge solutions such as Qualcomm's Snapdragon 710 are needed on a broad scale.

"Qualcomm already has a strong presence in key brands in the mid-tier. The Snapdragon 710 can further strengthen Qualcomm's share within key brands in the mid-tier segments as it has in the $100-$200 lower-tier segment," the white paper added.

By Sowmya Sangam

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