Industry analyst Counterpoint has released new research indicating that India has overtaken the US as the world’s second largest smartphone market by user base – i.e. the number of people who own a smartphone.
China overtook the US back in 2011 and these latest numbers confirm India as the new engine of global smartphone volume growth – such as it is – now that China has slowed. Counterpoint reckons the Indian smartphone market grew by 23% in 2015 to top 100 million units for the year.
“India has inched past USA to become the second largest smartphone market in terms of active unique smartphone user base in the world with the base crossing 220 million users,” said Tarun Pathak of Counterpoint. “India still has a long way to go as the smartphone penetration of the total potential population is still below 30%.
“As a result, India continues to attract new smartphone brands every quarter adding to more than 150 smartphone brands selling their devices in the country. Furthermore, government driven initiatives such as Make in India and Digital India have gained serious momentum in 2015 to attract more players in the mobile value chain. Almost half of the total mobile phones shipped in India during the quarter were assembled in India.”
Micromax, Intex and Lava are all Indian brands that mainly target the lower price points. Micromax has maintained second place in the India smartphone market behind Samsung for a while. Intex and Lava are especially strong in the sub-$100 segment.