India is the world's second-largest smartphone market after China. For several aspiring brands, the Indian market is the ideal battleground to see the best kind of response for new products. The diversity of the country and the growing demand for smartphones makes India an important market, which is why we see a burgeoning number of international brands foraying here.
The Chinese brands have dominated India's smartphone market by offering wholesome packages at competitive prices, giving big brands like Samsung and Apple a run for their money. Xiaomi is one such example, which has grown multifold ever since it stepped in India. Started with just smartphones, the company now offers smart TVs, wearables and much more.
Xiaomi has set a benchmark for growth in the Indian market, which is a lot different from the Chinese market. But the existing strategies won't get Xiaomi too far at this pace as rivals are growing at a faster pace.
The rise of another Chinese rival
Following Xiaomi's lead, Realme has made itself well-known in the Indian market. The spun-off brand from Oppo now has a brand awareness of its own. The leadership at Realme has made sure its product campaigns make a lasting impression on consumers and it all seems to be paying off.
According to a report by International Data Corporation (IDC), Realme registered the highest year-over-year growth during third quarter of this year. With a staggering 401.3 percent spike, Realme's market share reached 14.3 percent from 3.1 percent in the same quarter last year.
Even though Xiaomi retained the top spot in the market with the highest market share of 27.1 percent, which dipped from 30.6 percent from Q1 2019. Samsung also witnesses a decline in its market share during the third quarter of 2019 by holding on to 18.9 percent share. Vivo still managed to secure the third spot in the market with 15.2 percent market share, which rose 58.7 percent in a year.
Interestingly, Realme surpassed Oppo in the league. Oppo secured 11.8 percent of the market, which was still a better YoY growth as compared to Xiaomi and Vivo at 92.3 percent.
Realme's success formula
Realme has been taking a dig at Xiaomi from day-1 by launching products that compete directly against its Chinese rival. The company's remarkable growth is credited to the success of its affordable smartphone range, especially the Realme C2, Realme 5 and Realme 3i series. Realme's online presence is stronger at an all-time high of 26.5% in 3Q19.
At this growth rate, Xiaomi and Samsung could have serious problem. Realme could emerge as a top contender in the Indian marketplace, which is deemed crucial for brands for their global success.
"As Realme comes with new offerings in the mid-tier and premium segment, and OPPO and Vivo also unveil plans to go premium, Xiaomi faces an uphill battle," Prabhu Ram, Head-Industry Intelligence Group (IIG), CyberMedia Research (CMR), told IANS.
Boasting the company's success, Realme CEO Madhav Sheth revealed the company had sold 15 million phones in the first year of operations and it is looking to double that in 2020. Realme is already the fastest-growing smartphone brand in India if we look at the quarterly report and this means Samsung, Xiaomi, Vivo and others should buckle up.