Samsung, India’s long-standing king of smartphones, is facing its biggest ever threat in the nation of 1.3 billion. A new challenger – in the form of China’s Xiaomi – is growing strongly, and it’s now edging tantalisingly close to toppling Samsung’s statue.
Korea’s Samsung now has 24 percent of India’s smartphone shipments, versus a fast-rising 17 percent from Xiaomi, according to data this week from IDC.
While Xiaomi has recently been struggling in its native China as shoppers have switched to more premium-looking phones from the likes of Huawei and Oppo, India is a bright spot for the gadget-making startup.
Xiaomi, which first launched in India mid-2014, is seeing rapid growth whilst Samsung has been largely stagnant for several years.
Xiaomi’s strong surge comes a few months after Chinese brands hit a new milestone in India, passing a collective 50 percent of the market for the first time.
A few more stats from IDC’s India report for the April to June quarter:
- Chinese brands stretched their lead further to 54 percent
- Xiaomi’s Redmi Note 4 is nation’s most popular model
- 28 million smartphones and 34 million dumb phones shipped
Xiaomi dishes its own India data:
- Xiaomi opened its first store in the country in May
- Plans to open 100 stores in the next two years
- Stores essential to growing sales in places where people are less familiar with online shopping, which Xiaomi initially relied on for sales
- Already, Xiaomi sees 20 percent of sales from offline retail
- Now has two Indian factories
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