Smartphone sales dropped by 30.5 per cent month-on-month in November in the top 50 cities of India. International Data Corporation's (IDC) latest Monthly City Level Smartphone tracker reveals that this downward trend can be attributed to demonetisation and resulting cash crunch along with the cyclically lean period after the festive season in October.
This tracker divided the vendors in three different categories - China-based vendors including Xiaomi, Ginoee, Vivo, Lenovo Group, Oppo; India-based including Intex, Lava, Micromax, LYF, Karbonn and global vendors including Apple, Samsung, HTC and Sony. According to the tracker, India-based vendors were hit the most due to demonetisation, with a drop of 37.2 per cent in November 2016 across the Top 50 Cities of India as compared to China-based vendors with 26.5 percent drop and global vendors with 30.5 percent drop over the previous month. Market share of China-based vendors has increased to 42.6 per cent in Tier-I cities from 38.7 percent market share in Oct 2016. Also, they have extended their market presence in Tier-II and beyond with a marginal increase in the market share. India-based vendors are finding it difficult to compete with aggressive China based vendors due to shrinking spends in their marketing and the absence of a good product assortment.
Upasana Joshi, Senior Market Analyst, IDC India, says, "Demonetisation has impacted the smartphone market at almost all levels including customer demand and stock movement in distribution channels. The slowdown was seen across all city tiers, with a degrowth of 31.7 percent in Tier-I cities and 29.5 percent in Tier-II, III & IV cities in November 2016 over October 2016. Interestingly, the premium smartphone segment saw some growth during the weeks following demonetisation, wherein consumers were seen rushing to buy higher priced smartphones using the demonetised currency, with reports of these high priced models being sold at a premium."