OnePlus was a top 5 flagship brand in Q4 2018 while the Google Pixel is the fastest growing brand in the US
Google’s Pixel smartphones have a lot of good going for them, but their high pricing tends to keep them from being an approachable brand and product. The high pricing, coupled with the lack of marketing, meant that the Google Pixel always was a step behind in the premium segment as far as sales are concerned. However, with the Pixel 3, Google refocused its efforts into marketing and advertisement to create a wider mass-appeal, going beyond the smartphone enthusiast.
The efforts of these marketing and advertisement campaigns are now bearing fruit. According to a recent report from Strategy Analytics, Google Pixel is currently the fastest-growing major smartphone brand in the US in the high-end segment. Unfortunately for Google, this success is not yet echoed on a global level, as the Pixel does not come in anywhere close to these levels worldwide.
Meanwhile, OnePlus has finished as a Top 5 Smartphone company in the US in the high-end segment in Q4 2018, according to a report from IDC. OnePlus was able to ship enough volume in Q4 2018 to grab a top 5 position in terms of market share in the >$500 market segment in the USA.
“It’s been over five years since we launched our first phone in the US, initially as an online-only offering. We’re proud of how far we’ve come and even more excited about the future ahead.”
OnePlus’s success in the US comes on the heels of similar success stories in growing markets like India, where it emerged as the leader in the $500-$700 market segment of India’s smartphone market on the back of encouraging sales of the OnePlus 6 and OnePlus 6T. However, even though the premium segment (>$500) in India outgrew other price segments in 2018 with a 44% YoY growth, it still constitutes a meager 3% share of the overall smartphone market in the country. This means that while OnePlus is winning in the premium segment, that segment does not even come close to the popularity of other segments. Half of the smartphone market in India comes within the $100-$200 segment, and the average selling price in the country in 2018 was $158.
So while OnePlus and Google may have had a terrific 2018 in the US, there still is a lot of work to do in the rest of the world before they can catch up to the likes of Samsung as a global brand.