Smart devices maker Samsung continued to lead the smartphone market in the country for the fourth consecutive quarter in July-September with a 17.2 per cent market share, market research firm Counterpoint said on Wednesday.
Shipments of iPhone maker Apple crossed 2.5 million units in the reported quarter thereby registering an all-time high in a quarter, according to the Counterpoint's Monthly India Smartphone Tracker report.
"Samsung maintained its leading position for the fourth consecutive quarter with a 17.2 per cent share driven by the success of its A and M series.
"Aggressive push in offline through better incentives and price parity across channels, focus on the fastest growing premium segment and innovation through the latest ultra-premium offerings are some of the strategies helping Samsung keep ahead of the competition," Counterpoint Research, research analyst, Shubham Singh said.
Samsung was closely followed by Xiaomi, with its 16.6 per cent market share driven by strong demand for the Redmi 12 series and offline expansion.
During the reported quarter, the share of 5G smartphone shipments reached 53 per cent.
The main growth driver was OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) pushing multiple launches in the Rs 10,000-15,000 segment with 5G penetration reaching 35 per cent in this segment, compared to 7 per cent in the year ago period.
"In the third quarter of 2023, OEMs focussed on launching new devices and kept filling in channels to prepare for the festive season ahead.
"We saw some interesting launches, with key features like 5G and higher RAM (8GB) diffusing to affordable smartphones (in the sub-Rs 10,000 segment).
"The premium segment and 5G were the two focus areas and saw multiple launches," Counterpoint Research, senior research analyst Shilpi Jain said.
The research firm said that the trend of ultra-premiumization, which are smartphones above Rs 45,000, is steadily gaining momentum with each passing quarter.
In the reported quarter, the ultra-premium segment grew 44 per cent year-on-year (YoY) basis driven by the availability of easy financing options, implementation of various incentive programs in the market, and growing consumer aspirations for the latest technology.
"We are observing an increasing demand for foldables in the ultra-premium segment due to their different form factor, which transforms the way we perceive and utilise smartphones.
"The future looks promising for them as more OEMs are entering the segment," the report said.
According to the report, Apple recorded 34 per cent YoY growth.
"Third quarter, 2023 also marked the best quarter for Apple's shipments in the country, which crossed 2.5 million units.
"Premiumization has started in the world's second-largest smartphone market and Apple has again got the timing right to benefit from this trend through its devices and financing offers," the report said.
OnePlus was the top brand in the affordable premium segment, in Rs 30,000-Rs 45,000 price segment, with a 29 per cent share driven by strong sales of the OnePlus 11R, the report said.