The year is not a good one for Apple in India. It was earlier reported that the sales of iPhones have taken a hit this year and that the Cupertino based technology giant has seen the first full year decline in sales. And now, a report has emerged that highlights how the company continues to lose its grip in the Indian smartphone market. The report in The Wall Street Journal states that the expensive Apple iPhone range is not able to compete against devices from companies like Samsung, Xiaomi and Oppo in India.
A number of smartphone makers from Asia, and mainly China has captured the Indian smartphone market. While Xiaomi reportedly dominated the budget segment, OnePlus has been ruling the premium smartphone market in the country, according to research firms Counterpoint and IDC. Generally, devices from these companies are more affordable than Apple and they pack a number of features, so customers are naturally drawn to buy them.
Coming back to the The Wall Street Journal report, it highlights a counter salesperson from India who said that even a single iPhone sale in a day now is being considered lucky. A few years back in 2013, around 80 iPhones were sold in a single day, the source continued to tell. However, we should mention that a shift from offline to online shopping must be considered. Also, the competition in recent years has grown stiffer with a number of new smartphone players coming in.
Apple’s this year’s range comprises of iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and the ‘affordable’ iPhone XR. However, since the smartphone bears a price tag of Rs 76,900, it is not exactly what many people call as ‘affordable’. However, some Apple devices do continue to sell in India, but these are mostly older models including the iPhone 6 and iPhone SE. It is worth noticing that these can be bought by customers at around Rs 20,000. The more expensive models have fewer takers. And to add to Apple’s woes, OnePlus and Samsung are continuing to strengthen their hold in the smartphone market.
According to the report, Apple’s premium and high-margin approach may make it successful in some ‘developed’ markets, but it’s not doing the company much good in India. A change in strategy is the obvious next move for Apple if it hopes to revive in India.