India smartphone market grew by 4% in Q1, but 10% decline in shipments expected in 2020

Counterpoint Research reports that the Indian smartphone market has witnessed a growth of 4 percent year-on-year in smartphone shipments in the first quarter of this year before the lockdown was imposed in March. The report reveals that a total of 31 million units were shipped in Q1.

Currently, due to the lockdown, e-commerce websites are only supposed to deliver essential goods till 3 May. So, it is only after the lockdown lifts, that we can get a clear picture of whether these units are actually sold or not. Counterpoint Research suggested that due to this nationwide lockdown, the market is set to see a decline in these numbers. In addition to this, Indian smartphone shipment is likely to see a decline of 10 percent this year.

Xiaomi. Image: tech2/ Prannoy Palav

The report suggests that Xiaomi has dominated the market in terms of shipments in Q1 2020, with a 30 percent market share. Due to the high demand for the Redmi 8 series, Xiaomi saw a six percent year-on-year growth in the same quarter. Xiaomi is reportedly followed by Vivo with a 17 percent market share. A decline from 21 percent in Q4 2019 to 17 percent in Q1 2020 is also reported in the market share of Vivo. Samsung stands at third position with 16 percent market share and Realme secures the fourth position, followed by Oppo at fifth.

As per the report, Apple emerged as the market leader in the ultra-premium segment (Rs 45K and above) with 55 percent market share. Discounts on iPhone 11 (Review) on Flipkart and Amazon are expected to be a driving factor here.

Shilpi Jain, research analyst at Counterpoint Research said in a statement, “smartphones should be considered as essential items during the lockdown as people are dependent on them as a primary mode of communication. Sales should be allowed through online channels or through Online to Offline (O2O) model. This is happening in Europe and the USA where online channels still remain in service.”

The report also mentions that the increase in GST on smartphones to 18 percent will margin for OEMs (Original Equipment Manufacturers) and it will reflect in the prices of upcoming phones as well.