The OnePlus 6T was the top premium phone in India in Q1, but Samsung has retaken the #1 spot
In 2018, OnePlus 6 and the OnePlus 6T turned out to be very favorable for the company in India and propelled it to the top of the leaderboard for the premium category of smartphones. In the country, OnePlus soared above global dominators such as Samsung and Apple due to the proposition of “affordable flagship” that it offers. But after three consecutive quarters of dominating the above-₹30,000 (~$425) segment, OnePlus has lost the pole position to Samsung in the first quarter of 2019.
Samsung reportedly triumphed over OnePlus due to strong sales of the new Galaxy S10 series. This resonates with the worldwide success of the Galaxy S10 trio, which sold much more Galaxy S9. However, these findings are in spite of OnePlus 6T being the highest-selling premium smartphone in India.
Just like the other segments of the Indian smartphone market, the premium category continued to grow. This is because Indians with originally multiple smartphones are now opting to buy a single but better smartphone. While Samsung, OnePlus, and Apple continued to collectively hold 90% of the premium smartphone market, Huawei’s flagship Mate 20 series got decent attention from new buyers.
In spite of an upward shift in the premium segment, iPhone sales in India fell due to its “excessive” pricing. The company may have some respite if it executes its plans to start manufacturing in India, a step that might help it save 20% of the cost adding up due to import duties. However, that also depends on whether Apple intends to pass on these savings to the buyers.
As for the premium Android devices, OnePlus 6T continued its dominance and remained the best-selling premium smartphone. It was followed by the Galaxy S10 Plus and the Galaxy S10. For this quarter, we can expect OnePlus to regain its top stop with the launch of OnePlus 7 series on May 14. Google Pixel 3a is also likely to generate some interest among users looking for flagship-grade camera features at relatively affordable pricing.
Source: Counterpoint Research