Apple’s iPhone is slowly getting the taste of success in India. According to Counterpoint Research, Apple created a new record by selling 2.5 million units of iPhone throughout 2016.
Additionally, Apple is a leader in Q4 sales of Premium Smartphone segment (Above $450) with 62% share in India. Many of these units were iPhone 7 & iPhone 7 Plus which was launched during 4th Quarter. Though, in Q4 Apple claimed 10th place in the Indian smartphone market.
Apple Win is also attributed to the failure of Samsung Note 7 in Q4
During the period, the smartphone brand which bagged the top position was Samsung with 24% market share. After Samsung, the Chinese brand Vivo claimed 2nd position with 10% share. The Third position is share by Lenovo and Xiaomi with 9% share, followed by Oppo with 8% share.
Counterpoint Research highlights that Chinese smartphone brands (Combined) were having 14% share a year ago, which has increased to 46%. In short, Indian brands like Micromax, Karbonn, Lava, Intex, etc. are losing battle against Chinese brands.
Apple accounts for less than 2% of the smartphone shipments in India with 2.5 million iPhone.
Samsung Loses Top Position to Apple in Q4’16
Apple’s Strenuous Battle in India
Though, Apple sold 2.5 million units of iPhone in 2016 but isn’t anywhere near to the top. The real fact is that Apple has struggled to make a dent in Indian smartphone market. iPhone is too expensive for the Indian market. Apple has also launched the cheaper iPhone SE in developing countries like India. iPhone SE was unable to lure the customers, hence failed to make an impact on Indian buyers.
Recently, Tim Cook visited India and met Indian Prime Minister “Narendra Modi”. As per recent reports, Apple will start making iPhone in Bangalore, India starting April ’17. Apple has selected ‘Wistron’ for manufacturing iPhones in Bangalore technology belt. Allegedly, this move will help Apple to reduce the cost of iPhone in India and can pass the benefit to customers in India.
Apple has a long way to go in the Indian market and as the below image shows the huge difference in the Android and iPhone share in the Indian market. In fact, Apple shipped less than 2% smartphones in the last quarter. Though the estimated share of iOS devices is less than 5% in India (between 2% to 5%), in contrast to 45% share in the US.
Apple and Samsung Share in China
Apart from small growth in India, Apple has lost the top position in China. Apple was the highest smartphone selling company in China in 2012. But that position was snatched by homegrown company ‘Oppo Mobiles’.
Oppo Sold a record 17 million Oppo R9 in the Chinese market in the last year (2016) compared to the 12 million units sold of iPhone 6s.
Additionally, Vivo and Huawei are also ahead when compared to Apple in terms of sales in China. While Samsung is nowhere near Apple in the Chinese market.
India is one of the most promising markets for Apple with growing economy and spending power, Apple is targeting bigger gains in the Indian market in the Coming years.
Though Samsung is already gearing up for the Samsung S8, and is doing with a revengeful mood, with rumors pointing Samsung is blocking the supply of the next Gen Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 for other manufacturers and keeping everything for the upcoming S8 and S8 Plus.
Samsung Vs Apple battle is going to be more intense in 2017 with the iPhone 8 and the Samsung S8, trying to bring new innovations and set the trend for future of smartphones.