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How Chinese smartphones became big brands

By Finserv MARKETS - May 30,2019
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For the last 2-3 years, all we have seen the rise of Chinese smartphone brands in the Indian smartphone market. Just a few years ago, if you would ask an Indian about a Chinese product, the typical answer would be something like, “sasta hai par koi guarantee nahi” – it’s cheap but not reliable.

That perception could still be relevant for millions of other Chinese products that informally flood the Indian market, but nothing is farther from the truth when it comes to smartphones. Let’s look at some numbers and statistics to see the popularity of these best-selling smartphones and the extent of the damage they have done to their Indian and some Chinese counterparts.

Smartphone Brands in India – Biggest User Base Gainers & Losers

So, that’s how things stood in 2018. The top three Chinese brands had increased their customer base by a whopping 71%. Xiaomi emerged as a clear leader by cutting through the user base of rivals and adding 36.9% new customers. And remember these figures were only for the second quarter of 2018; by the end of the year, Xiaomi smartphones became the number one selling the smartphone in India. Homegrown mobile phone manufacturer Micromax was the hardest hit, losing an unbelievable 41% of its customers in just one quarter. It was less painful for Intex as it lost 11.6% of foothold on the smartphone market. HTC, Gionee and Karbonn also saw user drop-outs ranging from 4.7% to 5.5%.

A few months later, after the CyberMedia Research survey report, an International Data Corporation (IDC) report in February 2019 revealed the Xiaomi captured the biggest share of the Indian smartphone market in 2018 at 28.9%, toppling South Korean brand Samsung to second place at 22.4%. Vivo was third but with a good difference at 10%. This meant that Chinese brands were all set to dominate the Indian smartphone market in 2019 and beyond.

But what makes Chinese smartphone brands so popular and desirable? And why they have risen from nowhere to challenge well-established, global smartphone brands such as Samsung and Apple?

In this article, we’ll try to understand why and also take a look at a few of the best smartphones in India, which obviously are Chinese.

·         Aggressive pricing

Chinese manufacturers have always been known for aggressive pricing of products but it’s even more competitive when it comes to smartphones. As reported in the news recently, Lei Jun, CEO of Xiaomi, mentioned in a product launch that the company will pass on the benefit to the customer if they make more than 5% of net profit on their hardware business. For example, Xiaomi’s Redmi Note 7 Pro’s price for the 64GB version with top-of-the-line specs and performance is just below Rs.18,000 in India.

·         Happy retailers and distributors

Market insiders reveal that manufacturers of Redmi, Vivo and Oppo mobiles give targets to distributors based on the number of smartphones they sell rather than the total value of their sales. On the other hand, brands such as Samsung pay incentives to distributors based on the value of their sales. Retailers and distributors make more profit selling Vivo, Oppo and Xiaomi Redmi smartphones. While Chinese brands spend a lot on advertising and sponsors, as well as pay retailers a good sum of money to display their boards and even decorate their stores, they never allow those expenses to reflect on the price of their smartphones.

·         Localisation

Chinese companies are not only making the best mobile phones in India they are also listening and ready to offer value to their customers by making products that cater to their needs. One of the ways they achieve this is through localisation. One remarkable example of success through localisation has been Transsion, the Chinese smartphone maker that owns the iTel brand.  When Transsion observed that it was difficult to operate phones with oily hands as most Indians used their hands to eat (instead of spoons, forks etc.), they developed smartphones with an oil-resistant fingerprint recognition feature to tackle this problem. iTel, quite a late entrant to the Indian smartphone market, had increased its customer base by 6.7% in the second quarter of 2018.

At Bajaj Finserv EMI Store we can choose from a selection of latest selling Chinese mobile phones that fit your budget and style. Select from popular models like the Redmi Note 7 Pro, Redmi Note 5 Pro, Oppo A7 and Vivo V11 Pro.  All these latest smartphones are available on the EMI store at the lowest prices, and at no-cost EMIs with zero down payments and no extra processing fee using the Bajaj Finserv EMI Card. If the product is somehow found damaged, the store immediately changes it or the customer gets a full cashback.

Check out all the latest smartphone models on the Finserv Markets EMI Store along with their features and prices in India. So there you go. Now, what are you waiting for? Go buy your favourite device today!

To read more interesting blogs on smartphones you can check out: Everything You Need To Know About Oppo Find X, Redmi Y1 vs Redmi Note 5 – Specifications & Features, Best Vivo Mobile Phones Under 10,000, and many more at Bajaj Finserv Markets EMI Store.


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