Samsung leads India smartphone market with 25%, Xiaomi jumps

Korean smartphone maker Samsung continues to dominate the India smartphone segment with 25% market share in the third quarter of 2014, followed by Micromax and Karbonn with 20% and 10% market share respectively with China's Xiaomi making rapid strides, according to Counterpoint research.

Motorola, which is now a Lenovo company, remained the fourth largest smartphone vendor while Sony closed the quarter at the fifth spot.

"Samsung led this price band during the quarter but the share is being chipped away by Micromax, Lava and the new entrants such as Motorola and Xiaomi," Tarun Pathak, senior analyst at Counterpoint research, said in a statement Tuesday.

With just two months of sales, Xiaomi raced to capture 1.5% share of the Indian smartphone market and is on track to double its market share sequentially, according to Counterpoint research's Market Outlook service.


Xiaomi will join the trend of undercutting bigger rivals such as Samsung with a high value-for-money offering similar to what Motorola, Micromax and ASUS have been offering over the previous quarters, the firm said.

The quarter was marked with major milestones crossed by Motorola, Sony and Lava (excluding Xolo) charting their growth story in this high-growth important market. These brands are now shipping more than a million smartphones per quarter joining the likes of Samsung, Micromax and Karbonn. Motorola's leaner go-to-market strategy coupled with its portfolio of Moto X/G/E phones at competitive price points is being received very well by urban consumers.

Sony's 1 million mark was driven by Xperia C, Xperia M dual and the Xperia Ultra T2 devices. Indian brand LAVA (excluding Xolo) also joined the million smartphone club shipping 1 Million units of its Iris sub-branded smartphones for the first time in India in a single quarter (3Q 2014).

The research firm predicts Xiaomi, Xolo, Gionee and Intex are in line to join the 'million smartphone club' in coming quarters.

The Cupertino vendor Apple crossed 1 million units of cumulative iPhone shipments for the first time in its fiscal year ever for India market. "This is a notable feat for Apple as it captured almost half of the high profit premium segment, taking share away from Samsung," the firm said. The Indian smartphone market grew a healthy 64% annually. "India smartphone market still has a room for vendors to grow exponentially as it expands deeper beyond urban India. The 6,000 to 8,000 INR price band is driving this trend and contributed to almost 30% of the total smartphone sales in Q3 2014," Pathak said.

The firm expects that three out of four smartphones in the country will be 3G smartphones going forward.

In the overall mobile phone market (smartphones + feature phones), it's a very close race between Samsung and Micromax for the top spot, as Samsung regained the lead from Micromax this quarter after the Indian vendor surpassed the Korean giant in Q2.

Samsung held 15.1% share of the overall handset market, while Micromax had 14.5% share, followed by Microsoft-Nokia 11% share. Karbonn stood at fourth spot with 9.6% share, while LAVA (excluding XOLO) captured fifth spot with 7.9% share.

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