Monthly smartphone shipments in India registered a 42 percent year-on-year (YoY) growth in October 2020, according to a recent International Data Corporation (IDC) report. The report said that the Indian smartphone market saw about 21 million shipments in October, driven by multiple festive sales online and the continuing pent-up demand in Q3 2020. This is the highest ever smartphone shipments in the month of October and second highest ever for any month in any year, according to IDC India's Monthly Smartphone Tracker. The highest amount of smartphones ever shipped were 23 million units a month earlier in September 2020.
Online shipments took a 51 percent share, registering a 53 percent YoY growth. Offline channels, especially in smaller cities and towns, also saw a 33 percent year-on-year growth, according to the report. In terms of segment, the low-mid range segment (roughly Rs. 7,500 - Rs. 15,000) grew by 60 percent YoY as the market share increased to 58 percent of the total Indian smartphone market. Xiaomi, Vivo, and Samsung led the list of manufacturers in this segment. Further, the premium or flagship segment (roughly Rs. 37,000 to Rs 52,000) also witness multifold growth with high shipments for iPhone XR, iPhone 11, and the OnePlus 8.
The IDC Monthly Smartphone Tracker also says that the Top 5 vendors remained unchanged, if compared to the previous quarter, with Xiaomi leading, followed by Samsung, vivo, realme, and Oppo.
Region-wise, 25 percent of the market in October sat in top tier cities, namely New Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Chennai, and Kolkata, registering more than 50 percent YoY growth. The report says that E-learning initiatives fueled the high demand in bigger cities.
The next set of emerging markets, namely Jaipur, Gurgaon, Chandigarh, Lucknow, Bhopal, and Coimbatore also grew by 50 percent YoY. However, the rest of the states (up-country markets) registered slower growth, averaging at 25 percent. This, IDC said was due to the looming economic concerns and consumer spending narrowing to essentials only.
The leading 50 cities of India accounted for 55 percent of the demand nationally. The remainder is in the next set of evolving towns and cities, with huge untapped potential in the up-country geographies (feature phone-heavy markets).
In terms of channels, online sales also registered a 23 percent, despite delayed deliveries due to restrictions in several zones, consumers went for online purchases, especially on third party e-Tailer platforms, gaining a 50 percent share. This could possibly be due to people preferring to stay indoors to avoid COVID-19 infection. Bigger cities leaned heavily towards online channels, with online sale being taking a 57 percent share in the top 5 metros. Due to the supply constraints, offline channel sales were impacted, resulting in fewer retail walk-ins. Xiaomi led in 34 of the major 50 cities within the online channel, while Vivo led in 44 of the major 50 cities within the offline channel.
The most popular price segment (Market operating price), according to the IDC report stood at $190 (roughly Rs 14,000), with 68 percent of the market going in the sub-US$200 (roughly Rs 15,000) range. Online channels fueled growth in US$100-200 (roughly Rs. 7,500 - Rs. 15,000) price segment, clocking in 93 percent growth YoY, collectively accounting for almost half of the sales in October. Further, Xiaomi was the leading brand in 30 of the top 50 cities within the sub-US$200 segment.
The midrange segment (roughly Rs 15,000 - Rs 22,000) accounted for almost a fourth of devices sold in October, with Samsung leading in 36 of the top 50 cities of India. The flagship segment (above Rs 37,000) registered 16 percent YoY growth in October, with Apple leading the market in an impressive 49 of the top 50 cities. Further, this segment accounted for a 5 percent market share in the leading 50 cities of India, compared to less than 1 percent in rest of cities.