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India’s smartphone shipments grew 23% YoY in Q1 2021: Counterpoint

Xiaomi led the market in Q1 2021 with a 26% shipment share. Five out of the top 10 smartphone models in the country were from Xiaomi.
Xiaomi led the market in Q1 2021 with a 26% shipment share. Five out of the top 10 smartphone models in the country were from Xiaomi. (Xiaomi)

Researchers warn the growth could decline in the coming quarters due to the latest wave of pandemic.

India’s smartphone shipments registered a record 23% year-over-year growth to hit 38 million units in the first quarter of 2021, according to the latest report from Counterpoint’s Market Monitor. The growth was mainly driven by new product launches, promotions, financial schemes, and pent-up demand from 2020. Researchers, however, warn that the growth in space could decline in the coming quarters due to the current wave of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Continuing with its stellar run, India’s smartphone market registered a third consecutive quarter of record shipments in Q1 2021, riding on pent-up demand. Consumer confidence also increased due to the beginning of a vaccination drive in the country. But these numbers should be taken with caution as a second and more virulent wave of COVID-19 is currently on in the country and is likely to impact the coming quarters. The consumer demand will take a hit due to the ongoing COVID-19 wave and subsequent lockdowns,” said Senior Research Analyst Prachir Singh in a release.

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According to the report, Xiaomi held the top spot with a 26% smartphone shipments market share. Samsung was in the second position with a 20% market share. Vivo, Realme and Oppo had 16%, 11%, and 11% market shares, respectively.

India smartphone shipments share
India smartphone shipments share (Counterpoint)

Overall, India’s mobile handset market (including feature phones and smartphones) recorded an 18% YoY growth in the first quarter of this year. According to the report, the feature phone market recorded a 14% YoY growth during the quarter, driven by strong shipments of Reliance’s JioPhone under the new model and subsequent promotions. itel, however, led the segment with a 21% market share.

India Handset Market Share, Q1 2021
India Handset Market Share, Q1 2021 (Counterpoint)

On Xiaomi, the report noted that the company recorded a 4% YoY growth in the first quarter. Redmi 9A was the best-selling model during the quarter. Samsung remained the second-largest brand in India’s smartphone shipments with 52% YoY growth driven by its focus on the budget segment with the new M02 series and multiple other launches.

“Vivo grew 16% YoY and held the third position in Q1 2021. With the recovery in offline channels in Q1 2021 following an improvement in the COVID-19 situation, Vivo continued to be the leading smartphone player in the offline segment,” the report concluded.

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