Apple’s iPhone 15 series has made a significant splash in India, capturing over half of the tech giant’s nearly 2.8 million smartphone shipments in Q4, as reported by Canalys. Strategic timing and festive promotions during Diwali largely contribute to this surge.
What Happened? The iPhone 15, with notable updates like USB-C, Dynamic Island, and a matte finish, has appealed to both new and existing customers in a predominantly Android market. Apple’s smart financing options, improved consumer environment, and expanding retail presence have also contributed to the phone’s popularity in India.
Notably, the iPhone 15 series marked a first for Apple in India, with the initial batch being locally assembled. Despite these efforts, Apple still holds a modest 7% market share in India’s smartphone sector, trailing behind giants like Samsung and Xiaomi.
The road ahead? The primary challenge for Apple in India is the high pricing of its iPhones, which remains significantly above the average smartphone cost in the country. For instance, the iPhone 15’s price in India is considerably higher than its U.S. price. However, Apple’s presence in India is growing, with record quarterly shipments and the opening of physical stores.
The Indian smartphone market, in general, is rebounding, with a 20% year-on-year growth in Q4 and nearly 39 million units shipped. While total shipments experienced a slight dip in 2023, experts anticipate market growth in 2024, driven by affordable 5G options and post-pandemic replacement cycles. However, manufacturers face the challenge of managing rising material costs.
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