According to a report published by IDC, India boasts the highest growing smartphone market in Asia with a growth of 186% YoY in the Q1 of year 2014. The supremacy can be gauged by the comparison, that second placed, China was able to record a growth of only 31% in the Q1. Owing to the shifting focus of major OEMs to improving their budget category devices, this quarter has seen plenty of Indians making jump from their feature phones to smartphones. Add to it the fact that it has become almost a fashion statement to carry a smartphone and given the number of interesting deals and choices around smartphones, this report should not come as a surprise to anybody who is familiar with the scene in India.
The overall smartphone penetration in India still remains at about 10% but no doubt with more and more people jumping from feature devices, this number will grow rather soon. The overall mobile phone market in India is stood at 61.07 million units in Q1 of 2014, which is a 1% growth YoY. It is interesting to note that the share of smartphones has grown from 10% to 29% in the last one year, while during the same time, the share of feature phones have fallen from 90% to 71% clearly indicating which side the growth is skewed.
Vendors shipped 17.59 million smartphones in India in the Quarter 1 alone. The phablets category which consists of devices that are bigger than 5.5 inches saw a growth of 125% from last year owing to plenty of budget friendly phablets available. These phablets not surprisingly were 5% of the 17.59 million smartphones that were shipped. In terms of brands, Samsung and Nokia continued to lead the charts with 20% and 13% share in the overall shipment numbers of phones, but in smartphones category, it was Samsung, Micromax and Karbonn that lead the way with 35%, 15% and 10% shares respectively.
The experts at IDC believe that smartphone shipments will reach north of 80 million units in India by the end of 2014 while the smartphone market will continue to grow at whopping 40% CAGR for the next 5 years.