Smartphones released by first-tier brands in India in 2020 were mostly models priced below INR15,000 (US$205), showing the purchasing power of Indian consumers is still rather weak, according to Digitimes Research's latest study on India's smartphone market.
In India's entry-level handset market segment, Oppo's sub-brand Realme and Transsion's local brand had stronger on-year sales growths than most other vendors in 2020, enabled by their strategies of flooding the market with multiple different-spec models.
In the high-end market segment, Apple had the best shipment performance in 2020.
Despite the coronavirus pandemic and the Indian government raising goods and service tax (GST), India's smartphone sales only went down slightly from a year ago in 2020, Digitimes Research's data shows.
Smartphones with 5G support also entered the India market and are gradually becoming more price-friendly. The release of OnePlus' Nord series 5G devices in the third quarter triggered a price decline in the entry-level segment.
But 4G will remain the mainstream telecom technology in India for the upcoming few years, as 5G commercialization and infrastructure construction are still progressing slowly.