Xiaomi has recently dethroned Samsung to become the number smartphone brand in India. The Chinese manufacturer was able to grab the number one spot because of the highly popular mid-range Redmi Note and Redmi smartphones. However, Xiaomi is not doing well in the market for premium tier smartphones. Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun had recently claimed that the Mi MIX 2 was not received well by the Indian customers. Fresh information reveals that the premium market was mainly dominated by phones like Samsung Galaxy S9+, Galaxy S9 and OnePlus 5T in the first quarter of this year. This has allowed Samsung to once again lead the premium tier market in India.
According to the latest market survey conducted by Counterpoint Research, the premium tier constitutes only 4 percent of the entire smartphone market in India. It has also stated that Samsung, OnePlus and Apple are the three main phone manufacturers that together account for 95 percent of the premium tier market.
In Q4 2018, Apple had reigned over the premium phones market in India because of phones like iPhone X and iPhone 8 series that were launched in the same quarter. The research firm claims Apple is now pushed to third position in Q1 2018 because of poor demand and increased import taxes that has led to overall volume decline of 55 percent. However, the company has been enjoying consistent sales for older iPhones on Amazon India and Flipkart.
The Samsung Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+ and Galaxy A8+ smartphones that were unveiled in the first quarter of this year have received good reception in India. Samsung’s popularity in the premium segment buoyed by the arrival of Galaxy S9 duo that has allowed it capture half of the premium market along with a year-on-year growth 16 percent.
OnePlus is in the second position in the premium market in India. The Chinese brand has shown the most stability as it has been holding to the same position since three consecutive quarters. The OnePlus 5T that was launched in Q4 2017 went on to become the most popular premium phone in Q1 2018. Its limited-edition variants like Lava Red and Star Wars themed model that was exclusively launched in India along with brick-and-mortar sales allowed to remain popular for Galaxy S9, iPhone X, iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus.
The upcoming OnePlus 6 is expected to increase the market share of the company in the premium segment since it has opened new stores and achieved wider brand awareness. Huawei has recently launched the P20 Pro in India and HMD Global has just released Nokia 8 Sirocco in the country. Both the companies are expected to compete with Samsung, OnePlus and Apple in the second quarter of the year.