Riding on heavy promotional offers especially on iPhone XR, Apple has regained top position in the premium smartphone segment in India in the second quarter (Q2) this year and should look forward to cement its position as festive quarters inch closer.
According to the International Data Corporation (IDC), in the premium ($500 or Rs. 35,000 and above) segment, Apple bettered Samsung for the leadership position with an overall share of 41.2 per cent in 2Q19.
The iPhone XR demand saw an uplift after the price drop and aided by heavy promotional activities.
"Apple's portfolio up till last quarter (1Q19) was driven mostly by old generation models (the non-X series) - making almost 70 per cent of total shipments," Upasana Joshi, Associate Research Manager, Client Devices, IDC India, told IANS on Wednesday.
With the price drop, she said, the entire trend shifted, with iPhone XR alone contributing to more than 55 per cent of total Apple shipments in 2Q19.
"This essentially means the sweet spot for Apple in India market lies within $750-$850 segment and the higher-priced models like iPhone XS/Max (above $1,000) are still unable to create similar demand in a price-conscious India market," Joshi added.
While Tim Cook announced that iPhones generated $26 billion in revenue in the company's third quarter that ended on June 29 - down 12 per cent from last year's June quarter - India actually witnessed a 19 per cent growth (year-on-year) in iPhone shipments riding on promotional offers and discounts from the Cupertino-based giant, according to an earlier Counterpoint Research report.
India returned in Apple's basket with strong double-digit growth. "India bounced back. During the quarter, we returned to growth there. We are very happy with that," the Apple CEO told analysts during the earnings call.
The return of Apple in India comes at a time when the company is reportedly set to manufacture top-end iPhone XS and iPhone XR smartphones courtesy its supplier Foxconn in the country. Apple in April started the assembling of iPhone 7 at its supplier Wistron's facility in Bengaluru.
"To continue this momentum, Apple would require more play in terms of product placement in $700 and above segment, rather than $1000 and above segment, accompanied by heavy promotional activities and attractive offers during the upcoming festive quarters," Joshi told IANS.