Counterpoint Research revealed Samsung shipped the most smartphones in India in 2023. The Korean company is back at the top spot after six years of Xiaomi dominance, but the owner of the Redmi and Poco brands showed some resilience and kept the top spot for the Q4 period with an 18.3% market share.
The total shipments remained flat for 2023, with about 152 million units. The first half was challenging for the whole industry, but in H2, the market started to recover, supported by 5G upgrades and better-than-expected festive sales. Counterpoint also revealed that Apple shipments in India crossed 10 million for the first time ever.
Research Analyst Shubham Singh commented that Samsung captured the market with aggressive marketing in offline and strong performance of the A series, while the premium segment had a “focused approach”. Vivo jumped in second with its CMF (color, material, finish) design approach of the vivo V29 series, and it also performed well with the T series in the offline segment.
Xiaomi managed to stay ahead of competitors in the October-December period by launching 5G phones in the affordable segment, and the company also introduced a “leaner portfolio”, meaning this time it didn’t duplicate Redmi and Poco units, saving confusion among consumers.
Another worthy mention is the premium market in India. It saw a 64% YoY growth thanks to financing schemes, allowing more customers to purchase higher-priced smartphones (over INR30,000 or about $365). Apple’s increase in the segment was, on one hand, fueled by its physical stores, but iPhones were also sold by retailers in lucrative deals and promotions.
Expectations for the next year are for users to go for devices that support Dolby Atmos and Dolby Vision, as well as phones with Generative AI. Foldables are also looking towards a bright future, and Counterpoint predicted the segment will cross the 1 million shipments mark in 2024.
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