Indian smartphone shipments flat in Q3 2023, Apple sees 34% YoY growth: Counterpoint

India’s smartphone shipments remained unchanged in the third quarter of 2023 (July-September), according to data from Counterpoint’s Monthly India Smartphone Tracker.

However, Apple witnessed its highest-ever smartphone shipments during this period, indicating a potential market recovery in the lead-up to the festive season.

Apple’s Impressive Growth

Apple recorded exceptional 34% year-on-year growth and shipped over 2.5 million units in Q3 2023, marking its best quarter in India. The trend of premiumization in India’s smartphone market is benefiting Apple, aligning perfectly with its offerings and financing options.

Market Share in India’s Smartphone Market Q3 2023

Samsung: Maintains its leading position with a 17.2% market share, driven by the success of its A and M series. Samsung’s strategies include an aggressive push in offline sales, focus on the premium segment, and innovation.

Xiaomi: Follows closely with a 16.6% market share, driven by strong demand for the Redmi 12 series and successful offline expansion. Xiaomi excels in providing 5G technology in the budget segment.

vivo: Ranks third and experiences 11% year-on-year growth. A strong offline presence and a focus on the mid-premium segment drive demand for vivo.

Transsion brands: The fastest-growing brands at 41% year-on-year growth in the overall market.

OnePlus: Leads the affordable premium segment with a 29% share.

Key Market Insights in India Q3 2023
  • 5G Adoption: In Q3 2023, 53% of smartphone shipments were 5G, with strong growth in the INR 10,000-INR 15,000 segment.
  • Ultra-Premiumization: The >INR 45,000 segment grew by 44% year-on-year, driven by financing options and consumer demand for the latest technology.
  • Foldables: Foldable smartphones are gaining popularity in the ultra-premium segment due to their unique form factor.
  • 4G Feature Phones: 4G feature phones accounted for 32% of overall feature phone shipments in Q3 2023, driven by affordability and access to apps.
  • Other Growing Brands: Brands like Nokia, Motorola, realme, and Google also recorded growth in Q3 2023.

Speaking at the report, Counterpoint’s Senior Research Analyst Shilpi Jain said,

In Q3 2023, OEMs concentrated on introducing new devices and continued to stock channels in preparation for the upcoming festive season. Noteworthy launches included affordable smartphones (sub-INR 10,000, ~$120) featuring key enhancements like 5G support and higher RAM (8GB). The premium segment and 5G technology remained the primary focus, resulting in numerous product releases.

Many OEMs are now offering attractive financing options through partnerships with financial institutions, along with marketing strategies that highlight the per-day cost of acquiring a new device. The market is gradually shifting towards growth, and we are observing a positive consumer sentiment as festive season sales progress. India’s smartphone market is poised for growth in the upcoming quarter, driven by pent-up demand, an extended festive season, and the rapid adoption of 5G technology.