India Smartphone Market Stays Resilient During Second COVID-19 Wave, Crosses 33 Million Shipments
- India’s smartphone market registered its highest ever shipments in H1 2021.
- Xiaomi led the market in Q2 2021 with a 28% shipment share. The brand registered its highest-ever ASP (average selling price) in a single quarter due to the strong performance of the Mi 11 series.
- Samsung captured the second spot with an 18% share while vivo captured the third spot with a 15% share.
- realme became the fastest brand to reach 50 million cumulative smartphone shipments in India.
- OnePlus led the premium market (>INR 30,000) with a 34% share.
New Delhi, Hong Kong, Seoul, London, Beijing, San Diego, Buenos Aires – July 28, 2021
India’s smartphone shipments grew 82% YoY to reach over 33 million units in Q2 2021, according to the latest research from Counterpoint’s Market Monitor service. However, the market declined 14% sequentially due to a fall in consumer sentiment during the second COVID-19 wave. But the decline was less than expected due to the resilient nature of the smartphone market.
Commenting on the market dynamics, Senior Research Analyst Prachir Singh said, “Smartphone shipments witnessed low volumes during April and May. However, the market saw a pent-up demand in June as restrictions were lifted and stores started to reopen. Offline-centric brands were more affected during April and May as consumers were preferring online channels for purchases. Brands like Xiaomi and realme were able to maintain high volumes leveraging their better online reach. Due to the multiple use-cases and functionalities, the smartphone has become an integral part of daily life and a necessity. The pent-up demand witnessed in June is a testament to that.”
Commenting on the competitive landscape and brand strategies, Research Analyst Monika Sharma said, “Chinese brands held a 79% share. Xiaomi led the market with a 28% share, followed by Samsung, vivo, realme and OPPO. The Redmi 9 series, as well as the Redmi Note 10 series, drove the shipments for Xiaomi while online-heavy Galaxy M-series and F-series drove the shipments for Samsung. The share of 5G smartphones is constantly increasing, crossing 14% in the June-ended quarter. realme was the top 5G smartphone brand with a 23% share, followed by OnePlus. OnePlus led the premium smartphone market (>INR 30,000) with a 34% share, driven by the newly launched OnePlus 9 series. To expand and serve their consumer base, many brands started home delivery of smartphones during lockdowns via digital platforms like WhatsApp.”
India Smartphone Market Share, Q2 2021
India’s mobile handset market grew 74% YoY in Q2 2021 but declined 28% QoQ. The feature phone market declined 50% QoQ with the second COVID-19 wave reducing the disposable income of its consumers, who mainly reside in Tier 3 and 4 towns, and rural areas. itel led the feature phone market with a 24% share, followed by Jio, Lava and Samsung. This is the seventh consecutive quarter where itel led the feature phone market.
India Handset Market Share, Q2 2021
- Xiaomi retained the top position in the Indian smartphone market with a 28% share driven by the Redmi 9 series and Redmi Note 10 series. Xiaomi captured the top four positions in the Top 5 models list with the Redmi 9A, Redmi 9 Power, Redmi Note 10 and Redmi 9, out of which the top three models clocked more than a million shipments. The Redmi 9A has been the best-selling model for the last three quarters. Xiaomi re-entered the ultra-premium segment with the Mi 11 Ultra powered by Snapdragon 888 chipset. In the premium segment, Xiaomi shipped its highest-ever volumes in Q2 2021, capturing more than 7% of the segment.
- Samsung remains the second-largest brand in India’s smartphone shipments, registering 25% YoY growth. It remained aggressive in online channels during the quarter. Its online-centric Galaxy M-series and F-series contributed to 66% shipments of the brand in Q2 2021. Samsung reached its highest-ever online share, an indication that the brand’s online channel strategy is working well along with its e-store. Samsung led the upper mid-tier (INR 20,000-INR 30,000) segment driven by the strong performance of the Galaxy A32, A52 and F62.
- vivo grew 61% YoY and held the third position in Q2 2021. The brand’s share in the premium segment (>INR 30,000) increased to 12%, its highest ever in a single quarter. The newly launched V21 series along with the X60 and IQOO 7 series drove the shipments for the brand. vivo also led the INR 15,000-INR 20,000 price band.
- realme grew 140% YoY in Q2 2021 and captured the fourth position in the Indian smartphone market. realme is quite aggressive with its 5G push. The brand led the market in 5G smartphone shipments, capturing more than 22% share. It also became the fastest brand to reach 50 million cumulative smartphone shipments in India.
- OPPO grew 103% YoY and had a 10% market share in Q2 2021. The OPPO F19 Pro Plus was the top 5G smartphone model in the INR 20,000-INR 30,000 price band. OPPO launched an e-store in Q2 2021 to expand its online reach and consumer base. The brand also helped its offline consumer base and channel partners by offering free smartphone deliveries during lockdowns by leveraging digital platforms like WhatsApp.
- POCO was the fastest-growing brand, registering 480% YoY growth driven by its strong demand in the budget segment. The POCO M3, C3 and X3 Pro were the top models for the brand in Q2 2021.
- Transsion Group brands (itel, Infinix and TECNO) registered 296% YoY growth, capturing a 7% share collectively in India’s smartphone market. itel remained the top smartphone brand in the sub-INR 6,000 price band. Also, in the sub-INR 8,000 price band, Transsion brands collectively led the market with a 29% share. itel has been leading the feature phone market for the last seven consecutive quarters.
- Apple witnessed 144% YoY growth in Q2 2021. The brand maintained its leading position in the ultra-premium segment (>INR 45,000 or ~$650) with more than 49% share. Continued strong demand for the iPhone 11 coupled with aggressive offers on the iPhone 12 series were the driving factors for this growth.
- OnePlus grew more than 200% YoY in Q2 2021 driven by the OnePlus 9 Series. The brand led the premium market with a 34% share. OnePlus captured three spots in the top five smartphone models in India’s premium market. It was also the top 5G smartphone brand in the premium segment in Q2 2021, capturing a 48% share.
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The Market Monitor research relies on sell-in (shipments) estimates based on vendor’s IR results and vendor polling, triangulated with sell-through (sales), supply chain checks and secondary research.
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