Samsung leads India’s Q1 smartphone sales, premium and selfie charts; Xiaomi follows in second

You can’t rule the smartphone world without dominating a few key markets, including India, and once again, Samsung claims an easy regional win. At 26 percent share during Q1 2017, the chaebol left rivals Xiaomi, Vivo, OPPO and Lenovo trailing, with only 13, 12, 10 and 8 percentage points respectively.

That’s right, still no Apple, Huawei or LG in the top five of the second-most populous country, and iPhones aren’t even the nation’s bestselling “premium” handsets anymore. Somehow, Samsung prevailed in the Rs. 30,000+ ($465+) segment in addition to driving “mid end” ($230 – $310) growth, the latter alongside OPPO, Vivo, Gionee and Motorola.

Back to the overall rankings, let’s not ignore Xiaomi’s feat, which may explain why the Chinese OEM remains hesitant about a long-promised US expansion. It’s the first time the Hugo Barra-deserted company has ever won quarterly silver, and that’s mainly due to the “online only” brand’s increasing focus on offline sales channels.

The same goes for Motorola, while OPPO, Vivo and Gionee are employing the reverse strategy, branching out from traditional stores to the web. It’s important to note that India has seen a big surge in not just smartphone shipments between January and March (15 percent compared to Q1 2016), but also average selling prices, as mid-rangers and high-enders gain mainstream popularity.

All in all, there were 29 million smartphones shipped in the region early this year, 96 percent of which supported LTE connectivity, and 80 percent of which sported a 5-inch or larger display. Oh, and apparently, “selfie-centric” models grew nine-fold annually, with Samsung also in the lead, followed closely by OPPO.

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About The Author
Adrian Diaconescu
Adrian has had an insatiable passion for writing since he was in school and found himself writing philosophical essays about the meaning of life and the differences between light and dark beer. Later, he realized this was pretty much his only marketable skill, so he first created a personal blog (in Romanian) and then discovered his true calling, which is writing about all things tech (in English).