With the shift in focus to earn profits, Chinese smartphone brands in India are introducing expensive flagship smartphones that cost more than iPhones and are slowly eyeing the premium Android segment– majorly dominated by Samsung.
Smartphone brands including Oppo, Vivo, Xiaomi and even iQOO have at least one model that costs more than Rs 60,000 in India. The hint is clear- these brands now want to be perceived as a premium brand and buyers with budgets closer to Rs 1 lakh get to choose beyond Apple and Samsung.
Debashis Sarkar of News18 asked the chief of Samsung’s mobile business– Dr. TM Roh– as to how Samsung sees this new development and this is what he said.
“Premium services are not limited to one product or one feature, but I believe that it should be based on the strong ecosystem and multi device connectivity,” said Dr. TM Roh President & Head of Mobile eXperience Business, Samsung Electronics.
Stressing on optimisation and the importance of strategic partnership with key tech companies globally, Dr. Roh said, “Over the last two years, we have continued to work with Google to bring Samsung’s premium experience to Android phones. We are continuing our effort to bring these industry leading innovations to the industry by collaborating with many strategic partners. The optimization and adaptation of these premium experiences to the local market is the key point for winning the business game.”
The premium market segment is expected to grow more than 30% this year, according to a report by Counterpoint Research and more buyers are looking to upgrade their mobile experiences.
Around five years back, most brands were interested in launching budget smartphones in India. This is because the Indian market, at large, was opening to the idea of owning a smartphone then. Over the years, people are now demanding better features and for the same, they are willing to pay more now. Thus, more and more brands want to be seen as an alternative to Apple and Samsung.
Not to forget, the pressure to increase margins in an uncertain geopolitical landscape is making brands look beyond the ‘Budget King’ tag.
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