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Decline of sales in China, Apple turns to India


New Delhi: The Indian market has surprisingly proven an asset for Apple, whereas according to reports, China has made a great fall in the company’s growth. Apple Chief Financial Officer Luca Maestri exclaimed that year-ago sales of the company’s flagship smartphone climbed 76% in the country.

Interestingly according to the surveys, the median age of people in India is just 27, Apple CEO Tim Cook foresees a great growth for the company in this domain.

“I see the demographics there also being incredibly great for a consumer brand, and for people that really want the best product,” Cook said. “We have been putting increasingly more energy in India,”

The growth of the company in India proves to be a promising prospect, where on the other hand Apple faces hardships with the economic downside in China. China being the second largest market, still shows some spark of growth as in Greater China revenue rose 14% in the last quarter, particularly Hong Kong, Maestri told the agency in an interview.

India cannot immediately offset Apple’s woes in China, said analyst Neil Shah of Counterpoint Technology Market Research. The company averaged only about 450,000 smartphone shipments per quarter in India in 2015, compared with more than 15 million per quarter in China, Shah said.

By reports and as Shah said, the company’s smartphone market share stands at less than 2%, where around 70% smartphones sell for less than $150.

As the liking for 4G network coverage is growing in India, Apple frames investing more in India to be a turning point.

The young generation is already willing to spend heavily on the device. As of China, Apple products are considered a status symbol.

“The love for the iPhone is there,” said Carolina Milanesi, chief of research and head of US business at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, a consumer research firm.

Apple’s next big task is targeting Indian market for their expansion, where its products are sold by third-party resellers. An Indian official told the agency that the company has filed an application with India’s Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion to open its own stores.(Inputs from agencies)

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How Gionee Aims to be Among Top 5 Smartphone Brands in India


After a brief hiatus, second-tier Chinese handset maker Gionee is geared up for a big splash in India with new smartphone launches amid a revamped strategy to be among the top five players in the country, a senior company executive has said.

The smartphone maker confirmed its restructuring plans last month, saying it will adopt a new business model under which distributors across the country would do their own marketing to enhance sales.

“India is becoming the second-largest mobile phone market globally and, for Gionee, it is as important as China or the European market. It is our commitment to invest further in this market to bring major change,” David Chang, Global Sales Director, Gionee India, told IANS in an interview.

The Chinese handset maker is in talks with the government to set up its own manufacturing unit in Faridabad, Haryana. Wikimedia Commons


“Setting up a manufacturing plant will help us in making all our phones by ourselves,” Chang added.

“We are aiming to get into the top five smartphone brands in the second half of 2018. In the first half of 2019, we will target to be among the top three players in the Indian smartphone market,” said the Gionee executive.

Buoyed by the response of its first bezel-less display smartphone — the “M7 Power” which was launched in November 2017 — the smartphone maker is set to introduce a series of full-view display devices.

The company said it will launch its first smartphone for 2018 as early as next month. Wikimedia Commons


This will be followed by several other bezel-less smartphone launches within the price bracket of Rs 10,000-Rs 15,000 — essentially either selfie-focused or battery-centric devices.

In an attempt to take on its rivals, the handset maker is also exploring the in-display fingerprint scanning technology.

“We are working on this new technology. We are working on a smartphone with under-the-display fingerprint scanner which would be launched globally,” Chang noted. Wikimedia Commons

The company will also introduce wireless chargers by the end of this year.

Acknowledging that its online distribution channel is not up to the mark, Chang said: “We started investing more in online channels beginning October 2017 and we believe online and offline channels are equally important. Now, we want to be more involved and would invest more in our online partners.”

“We have our exclusive stores, but right now we will focus more on building relationships with retailers directly,” Chang noted.

The handset maker is also mulling to restructure its strategy for online channels. Wikimedia Commons


“Gionee would be partnering with Amazon India, Flipkart and Paytm for introducing our new devices on their platforms.

“We will choose our best-selling models to be showcased online. We’ll also make sure there is no difference in price of the product that is available both online and offline,” Chang said.

Gionee, which has more than 600 service centres in India, said it will also work towards further strengthening its after-sales services in the country. IANS