iPhone takes 3 percent handset market share in India: analyst

iPhone takes 3 percent handset market share in India: analyst

Summary: Following its runaway success in China, Apple is taking India's booming emerging market seriously with the help of discounts and equated monthly installments (EMI) schemes.

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TOPICS: iPhone, Apple, India
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Apple's monthly iPhone sales in India have rocketed in the past few months, thanks to discounts and cash-back schemes. The maker of shiny rectangles is taking just shy of 3 percent share of the overall handset sales in the country.

3 percent sounds terrible, right? Wrong.

India has a population of 1.24 billion people. There are around 893 million phones in the country, according to the CIA Factbook. According to KPCB partner Mary Meeker, speaking at the D:11 conference on Wednesday, India will have around 67 million smartphone subscribers by the end of 2013, a massive 52 percent year-over-year growth. This represents around 6 percent of the total Indian population. 

Apple has taken not 3 percent of the smartphone market, but 3 percent of the total handset market, according to Credit Suisse analyst Sunil Tirumalai. That represents roughly 26.8 million iPhones in the country.

That figure is in line with the 300-400 percent increase in sales over the past few months from the 70,000—80,000 smartphones before equated monthly installments (EMI) schemes were introduced, Tirumalai said.

Apple began its EMI scheme to potential buyers a partial payment for iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S smartphones up front, with an additional six-to-twelve month instalment plan without paying interest.

Discounts have also help the company rake in the single-digit market share, "that has long been dominated by low-end feature phones," according to Tirumalai, which now brings in close to 400,000 iPhone sales per month.

Again, single digits in a smaller market would be atrocious. 3 percent in the second largest country in the world is big business for the iPhone maker. 

Apple launched the iPhone on Vodafone in India in 2008, around a year after it first launched in Europe and the U.S., and some select markets. Since then, it has aggressively targeted the Western markets, took on China — and successfully, to the point where China now makes up more than 15 percent of Apple's global annual revenue — and is now taking on India with full force after four years of stagnation.

Considering there isn't a single Apple Store in India, 3 percent market share of handset sales is impressive. By comparison, Massachusetts with a population of just 6.6 million has the same number of Apple Stores as it does members in the U.S. Representatives for the state.

(That's ten, by the way.)

(via The Times of India)

Topics: iPhone, Apple, India

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7 comments
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  • Apple expects iPhone sales for calendar Q2 to fall significantly as half-..

    ...year update cycle ends. iPhone sales expected to be below 30 million units.

    To fight this typical Q2-Q3 slowdown Apple has to either turn to half-years update cycle, or introduce parallel model -- for example, bigger one (http://d-rs.livejournal.com/983.html) and/or the same size, but "inexpensive".
    DDERSSS
  • I don't buy that number.

    Not in the slightest. I would believe 3% of the Indian smartphone market but never 3% of the handset market.
    Bruizer
    • Re: but never 3% of the handset market.

      You'd be right. Maybe more like 0.3%. Most phones sold in India wouldn't be smartphones.
      ldo17
  • I don't get this...

    Samsung and Android own China and Apple isn't even close... How is that remotely a runaway hit!
    slickjim
    • Android and Samsung own Korea not China.

      You have your countries wrong. Apple does very very well in China!!!

      See, I can end my thoughts with an "!" to imply outrage too.
      Bruizer
      • hmm... Who got the countries wrong then?

        Samsung is at 20% at the top of the China's market share, Apple only at 8%, or 5th place:

        http://www.zdnet.com/cn/apple-regains-fifth-spot-in-chinese-smartphone-market-7000015192/

        The number seems to agree with slickjim, yes?
        Samic
  • Completely wrong numbers

    All the figures quoted above are wrong. A completely useless comment on Apple's performance in India. What 3% they are less than 1%? Who is going to believe 400,000 iPhone sales in India per month. Even if they had been doing that many share would have been less than 3%:)
    anshul.gupta