5G Smartphone Shipments 2023: The smartphone market in India is undergoing a significant transition towards 5G technology, as evidenced by the 78% increase in 5G smartphone shipments year-over-year in the third quarter of 2023. Notwithstanding a marginal decrease of 1% in the overall market, the most recent data sourced from CyberMedia Research (CMR) underscores this noteworthy surge. Samsung and Vivo, by virtue of their prominent positions in the Indian smartphone industry, are at the forefront.
As per the data disclosed by CMR, India experienced a noteworthy 57% surge in its share of 5G smartphone shipments during the September 2023 quarter.
Leaders and Challengers in the Market
Samsung emerged as the dominant force in this flourishing market, attaining a significant 23% market share, while Vivo followed suit with a 16% market share. Significantly, Vivo, which currently occupies the third position in the overall market, increased its market share from 12% in Q3 2022 to 15% in Q3 2023, representing an outstanding year-on-year growth of 24%. As an alternative, Samsung experienced a marginal contraction of its market share from 20% during the corresponding period of the previous year to 17% in Q3 2023, due to a decline of 12% in shipments. Xiaomi, the competitor in second place, experienced the most significant decline in shipments, which fell by 21%. As a result, its market share decreased from 22% in the third quarter of 2022 to 17% in the same period of 2023.
In contrast, the Poco sub-brand of Xiaomi blossomed into an extraordinary success story, as evidenced by its 74% annual sale growth. Realme secured the fourth position with a market share of 14%, followed by OPPO at a close second with a market share of 10%. Smartphone shipments for OnePlus increased by 13 percent annually, demonstrating the firm’s strengthening position in the Indian market.
Apple, which held a 6% share of the smartphone market in the third quarter of 2023, experienced an impressive 44% increase in shipments compared to the same period the previous year, owing to alluring discounts on its older generation iPhones.
Varieties of Smartphone Segments
With the exception of 5G smartphones, the market for feature phones demonstrated a dynamic atmosphere. The third quarter of 2023 saw a more than 300 percent annual increase in 4G feature phone shipments, driven by the growing demand for such devices in rural India and the expanding market for companion devices in urban areas. A 6% year-over-year decline in feature phone shipments, with a 27% decline in 2G feature phone shipments, offset this significant increase.
For the year 2023, CMR forecasts a marginal decrease of 1% to 2% in smartphone shipments. However, the sector is positioned for a robust recovery in 2024, with 8-9% growth anticipated, fueled by 5G shipments that are anticipated to increase by more than 40% annually.
According to Menka Kumari, an analyst at CMR, “As we anticipate 2024 and beyond, the smartphone market is exhibiting promising indications of stabilization, along with comparatively diminished headwinds.” Smartphone original equipment manufacturers will exit 2023 with full inventories, up from one year prior. In the future, OEMs will work to maintain a condensed product portfolio with the help of assertive marketing tactics designed to gain market share.
Furthermore, the segmentation of smartphones unveiled noteworthy patterns. The market share of the value-for-money smartphone segment, which spanned a price range of Rs 7,000 to Rs 25,000, was a significant 69%. However, there was an annual decline of 11% in shipments for this particular segment. On the contrary, the market for inexpensive smartphones, which cost below Rs 7,000, experienced substantial expansion, increasing by 78% annually.
Conversely, the premium smartphone sector, which is priced between Rs 25,000 and Rs 50,000, experienced a year-on-year expansion of 11%. Similarly, the ultra-premium and super-premium segments, which carry price tags exceeding Rs 1,00,000 and Rs 50,000, respectively, demonstrated noteworthy year-on-year growth rates of 87% and 136%. These figures underscore the growing demand for high-end smartphones in India.