Riding on the success of its flagship devices like Galaxy Note 8, Galaxy A8+ and the newly-launched Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+, Samsung climbed back to the top in the premium smartphone segment in India with 50 percent market share in the first quarter of 2018, a new report said on Friday.
Samsung captured half of the premium segment with 16 percent Year-on-Year (YoY) growth driven by flagships Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+, Galaxy Note 8 and "online exclusive" Galaxy A8+.
Samsung, OnePlus, and Apple contributed to 95 percent of the overall premium smartphone segment.
"Galaxy S9 series promotions were strong both in offline and online channels with offers ranging from cashback, exchange, upgrade and data bundling plans across all major operators," said the report.
Samsung brought Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+ to the country on March 16.
In the fourth quarter of 2017, Apple led with a 46.9 percent share of the premium segment, while OnePlus and Samsung trailed with 24.9 percent and 17.6 percent respectively.
"Additionally, the Cupertino-based giant had to battle rising import tariffs due to lack of 'Make In India' domestic manufacturing capabilities for its portfolio," the report added.
The import tariffs have increased thrice in the past five months, leading to an increase in the price of already expensive iPhones in India during the quarter.
Apple's share in the premium segment fell as the volumes dipped by a massive 55 percent due to decline in shipments for its iPhone 8 and X series.
The increase in import duty on CBUs to 20 percent during the quarter, led to increase in prices of already expensive iPhones.
OnePlus was the fastest growing brand (over 192 percent) in the segment.
"OnePlus has been maintaining its second spot in the premium segment which it is has been holding since Q3 2017. OnePlus 5T was the best-selling model during the quarter, driven by its limited edition variant launch and expansion in the offline segment," Counterpoint said. The OnePlus 5T had a 25 percent share of the top premium models of the quarter, followed by the Samsung Galaxy S9+ at 17 percent and Galaxy S9 at 12 percent.
The premium smartphone segment remained flat (YoY) but declined 13 percent sequentially due to drop in promotions post festive Q4 2017.
Written with inputs from IANS