India pushed past Japan to become the third largest global smartphone market in Q1, according to a new report by Strategy Analytics. The analyst notes it’s the first time ever that India has moved up into third place. The top two worldwide markets for smartphones remain China and the U.S.Report: India Becomes Third Largest Global Smartphones Market [techcrunch.com]
Although Samsung and Apple are among the “key brands” driving growth in India, Strategy Analytics said it’s domestic players rather than foreign firms which are growing fastest. It name checks Micromax, Karbonn and Spice (all Android OEMs) as three examples of homegrown mobile makers with a growth rate of between 200% and 500% on an annual basis.
The local market also has what it describes as an “extra long tail of Indian microvendors” — such as Lemon Mobile — that it says is surging at 1000%+ YoY. “They are almost all using Android software, which captured 89% share of the entire market in the quarter,” the analyst added.
I've never heard of those Indian vendors. It would be interesting to look back and see one of these take off on the international markets. Lower cost Android devices could work well in a number of other markets that Samsung and Apple are ignoring.