Samsung’s share rises to 50% of Indian mobile market – Gartner

Samsung has powered ahead in the Indian mobile market and now has close to half of the total market, according to second-quarter numbers by Gartner. The Korean company’s share, in terms of revenue, will be even higher as its models are, on the average, costlier than what an average phone in India costs.

Samsung’s share has risen from 15 percent in early 2011 to 49.8 percent for the three months ended June 2012. In comparison, the company has a 21% market-share globally.

“If Samsung continues this strong growth, it could end 2012 with more than 60 percent share — exactly where Nokia was at the start of 2011,” Gartner said.

Mobile device sales in India are forecast to reach 251 million units in 2013, an increase of 13.5 percent over 2012 sales of 221 million units, according to Gartner, Inc. In other words, one in every five Indian will purchase a mobile phone this year.

The India mobile handset market is expected to show steady growth through 2016 when end user sales will surpass 326 million units, the researcher said.

“The Indian mobile phone market is very competitive with more than 150 device manufacturers selling devices to consumers. Most of these manufacturers remain focused on the low-cost feature phone market which still constitutes over 91 percent of overall mobile phone sales, offering a huge market to compete in,” said Anshul Gupta, principal research analyst at Gartner.

However, the report also found that local and Chinese brands were coming under pressure due to the emergence of the smartphone, as well as strong competition by global brands in the mid-range and low-end market.

“The increase in share of smartphone device sales, declining sales to first time buyers and the continuous focus of global manufacturers on the low cost feature phone market, has put many of the 150 plus local and Chinese device manufacturers under survival mode. Many of them are already struggling to maintain share in the growing market.”

Some of these local and Chinese manufacturers are building capabilities, distribution and brand to compete with the big global players as they are preparing to compete at a larger level covering broader consumer segments, Gartner said.

Manufacturers such as ZTE, Micromax, Karbonn Mobile, Huawei stand at sixth, seventh and twelfth in the Indian smartphone market in 1H12 and are constantly expanding their smartphone portfolio to compete at a larger level with big global manufacturers Samsung and Nokia which held the first and second position respectively.