India’s booming consumer driven economy has now made it the second largest smartphone market. The shipments in the country grew 23.3 percent to touch 100 million units during 2015, compared to 81.1 million devices in the previous year, a report by Counterpoint Research said.
“India has inched past the US to become the second largest smartphone market in terms of active unique smartphone user base in the world with the base crossing 220 million users. This speaks volume for the scale India market provides for any player in the mobile connected ecosystem,” the report said. India still has a long way to go as the smartphone penetration of the total potential population is still below 30 percent, the report added.
The smartphone shipments grew 15 percent to 25.3 million units during the October-December 2015 quarter compared to 22 million units in the year-ago period. This was led by a strong adoption of 4G LTE devices, the report stated. “The Indian smartphone demand grew strongly during the holiday season in the Q4 2015 quarter. However, the consumer demand waned since mid-November leading to smartphone shipments decline 11 percent sequentially,” it added.
India also witnessed a rollout of marquee LTE services by couple of network operators including the soft launch by Reliance Jio. With the declining average selling price of LTE capable smartphones, the report estimates that LTE services from the growing Indian smartphone user base will be much faster than what the 3G uptake rate has been.
Over 40 percent of the mobile phones shipped were smartphones in the fourth quarter. The report said that, almost half of mobile phones sold during the quarter were “Made in India” with over 20 mobile phone brands now assembling their phones in India. According to the report, the market share of the leading mobile manufacturers at the end of the December 2015 quarter showed, Samsung led the smartphone market with 28.6 percent share, followed by Micromax (14.3 percent), Lenovo (11.4 percent), Intex (9.6 percent) and Lava (6.8 percent). As far as the overall market (smartphones and feature phones), Samsung again led the tally with 23.6 percent share, followed by Micromax (13.7 percent), Intex (13 percent), Lava (12.6 percent) and Lenovo (4.8 percent).
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