India is witnessing a substantial surge in smartphone sales, rising as much as 12.8 million units in the third quarter of fiscal year 2013, an increase of 229% year over year. The numbers are swelling continuously and are expected to maintain the increasing growth rate in the upcoming quarters as well. With such promising growth, a report from Fool.com by Piyush Arora analyzes the prospects of three big players Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), Nokia and BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB), in the country.
Apple leaving no stone unturned
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is a renowned high-end phone maker, who leans significantly upon high quality products. In India, where the middle class makes up the major chunk of population, iPhone has just 2% market share. Apple is trying to launch devices which also appeal the masses and budget-conscious Indian consumers.
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) re-launched the iPhone 4 in India last month with a price tag of around $330. Canalys, a Singapore based research firm, notes that the company may go for a promotional buyback scheme to further decrease its price. In India, a smartphone priced in the range of $250-$330 can grab a major 8% share of the total smartphones sales in the country, and a low budget iPhone 4 would surely increase the Apple’s growth prospect.
On the other hand, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is trying to penetrate with its high end model, also. The company is starting a buyback program for its iPhone 4S, 5C and 5S offering a minimum of $83 for any working smartphone. The iPhone maker also provides an option to finance new device for nine months thus increasing the affordability of Apple devices in India. Indian consumers prefer value for money, and Apple has clearly understood this, which is why the company is launching promotional campaigns.
Nokia’s portfolio a plus while BlackBerry continues to struggle
Nokia Corporation (NYSE:NOK) (BIT:NOK1V) (HEL:NOK1V), once the leader in India, has only 5% market share. The company is trying to expand its portfolio to penetrate deeper into the country. In its portfolio, Nokia has 10 java based phones within a competitive price band of $60-$120. Also, the Lumia range of phones have provided the company with a much needed boost in emerging markets like India. The Lumia brand has 11 Windows-based smartphones with price band of $140-$770.
Just as it is globally, BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB) is struggling to gain traction in India as the company’s market share tumbled from 14.8% in 2010 to just 1.6% in 2013. BlackBerry could not capture the attention of the users with its new OS 10 based devices like Z10, Q10, Z30.