Xiaomi's Phenomenal Rise in India

But Staying on Top Will Be the Next Challenge

Xiaomi's transformation in India over the past three years has been remarkable. The Chinese phone-maker has introduced solid and affordable smartphones, which are particularly attractive when consumers, especially price-sensitive buyers, compare specifications and features.

We believe Xiaomi narrowly reached the top spot in the Indian smartphone market in the fourth quarter of 2017, surpassing Samsung. This is a point of great pride for Xiaomi and certainly not a matter of luck, but sheer hard work. The company approached the market in a practical way and most consumers wanting to get a deal have recognised this.

In general, Indian smartphone users look for smartphones with a specific set of features, particularly the following: dual-SIM capabilities, a decent camera, good support for texting, FM radio, and, of course, good voice quality. Some specifications such as fingerprint scanners that are becoming widely available in smartphones in developed markets are considered unnecessary at this point by most smartphone buyers in India.

We estimate that an average smartphone customer in the country has a monthly salary of about 15,000 rupees (about $235). Most people become entirely reliant on their phones, using them for business and pleasure. In many cases, this leads customers to upgrade their devices every year, and they're less loyal to a brand than users in other markets. We've seen examples of people switching between using devices from Apple to Samsung, then to Micromax and Xiaomi over a period of a few years.

One anecdotal account we refer to during our travels to India over the past four years, is of a person who switched between brands in just this manner. According to him, Xiaomi has become the preferred brand among his colleagues because the features that the phones offer match their needs. He also notes that a growing number of smartphone users have shifted from other international and local brands.

Value has been the driving force for this trend. Recently, for example, the Xiaomi Redmi 5A launched for an effective price of 4,000 rupees (about $63) after a rebate. This is a dual-SIM, five-inch phone with a 13-megapixel camera on the rear and FM radio. That was a promotional price, but it shows what consumers in India are looking for.

For Xiaomi, if reaching the top was a challenge, staying there could be an even greater one. If history is any guide of Samsung's competitive focus, we would expect that Samsung is readying new phones that are specifically priced to take on Xiaomi.

This entry was posted on January 31st, 2018 and is filed under Devices. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed or you can leave a response.

Posted By Raghu Gopal On January 31st, 2018

(There are no comments yet)
Leave a Comment

Hot News

Team Tweets

CCS Insight
A look at the next wave of collaboration tools hoping to solve the problem of technology overload in the workplace,… https://t.co/ZapufOw90k
Follow CCS Insight
Shaun Collins
RT @kestermann: Total UK mobile data traffic continues to show strong growth on 4G (now tailing off on 3G). @CCSInsight’s latest UK forecas…
Follow Shaun
Ben Wood
Quick shout out to Crissia in the @FitBark team for the excellent support today. Was having some problems correctly… https://t.co/F1bGOF30nX
Follow Ben
Martin Garner
Very interesting briefing just now with @retarus on "information logistics" - the Industrial IoT world increasingly… https://t.co/n1JIKDsX8e
Follow Martin
Geoff Blaber
Oh my.. The Verizon Y branding has now vanished entirely.. What happened to "doubling down and focusing on the netw… https://t.co/5K38Zmj1zG
Follow Geoff
Marina Koytcheva
Well done to @giffgaff for turning the outage PR nightmare into a positive story! Almost 39% of members chose t… https://t.co/Op5u3IZeWu
Follow Marina
Nicholas McQuire
Which tech brand does IT trust the most with their company data? #Microsoft now leaps ahead of the rest - includi… https://t.co/IMvfLRSmYK
Follow Nicholas
Kester Mann
RT @MarinaKoytcheva: Well done to @giffgaff for turning the outage PR nightmare into a positive story! Almost 39% of members chose to d…
Follow Kester
Angela Ashenden
RT @nickmcquire: Which tech brand does IT trust the most with their company data? #Microsoft now leaps ahead of the rest - including secu…
Follow Angela
George Jijiashvili
RT @MarinaKoytcheva: Great job opportunity for a quantitative analyst: @CCSInsight is looking for a smart person to join our market forecas…
Follow George
Katie Taylor
RT @bengoldacre: In 2017 @NHSengland published a list of things GPs should not prescribe. Six months on, we checked the data to see what i…
Follow Katie

Recent Blog Posts

Blog Post
Postmates' Food Delivery Bot Robots Like This Could Be the Future of Delivery Postmates ... Read more
Blog Post
The Digital Workplace Hub The Next Wave in Collaboration The collaboration software m... Read more
Blog Post
The Money Trail The Bane of Location Tracking We gain a lot from smartphone... Read more
More blog

Latest Company News

Blog Post
Virtual Reality Device Market Declines in 2018 But Outlook Remains Positive Research firm CCS Insight forecasts 8 million virtual realit... Read more
More news