Indian consumers spent more than Rs. 50,000 crore in 2018 to buy smartphones made only by China’s four major brands, twice as much as in the previous year. Industry analysts and industry executives say the trend will continue as Chinese brands dominate the Indian smartphone market.
The four — Xiaomi, Oppo, Vivo and Honor — along with a few other Chinese brands like Lenovo–Motorola, OnePlus and Infinix, make up more than half of the total Indian smartphone market by sales. Sales of Chinese brands are growing rapidly this year too, as per the data available thus far, analysts said.
The Chinese brands are launching high-specification models at lower prices than South Korean, Japanese and Indian companies and have successfully established themselves as global brands, in line with the Indian consumer’s preference for products made by multinationals, two analysts said.
India stands to gain with Xiaomi, Oppo, Lenovo-Motorola, Huawei and Vivo investing in local manufacturing and creating jobs, thanks to Make in India policies. Xiaomi announced plans to invest Rs 15,000 crore in smartphone component manufacturing in April. Oppo is establishing two new manufacturing facilities in Uttar Pradesh.
Vivo employs more than 5,000 people in its plant. The chief of one of the largest cellphone retail chains said the Chinese brands have established themselves in key price segments — Xiaomi in the Rs 6,000-13,000 band, Oppo and Vivo in the Rs 10,000-22,000 one. Honor is gaining share in the Rs 8,000-12,000 segment.