Samsung M-Series Smartphones to Debut in India

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It is believed that the smartphones will be launched in the Rs 10,000 to Rs 20,000 smartphone category. Xiaomi leads the category in India at the moment

pic credits – Amazon India

Samsung will be selling M-Series smartphones exclusively through Amazon e-commerce portal in India. The brand also confirmed that India will be the first country to experience the M-Series smartphones in the world.

It is believed that the Samsung M-Series smartphones will be launched in the Rs 10,000 to Rs 20,000 smartphone category. Xiaomi leads the category in India at the moment.

Upasana Joshi, Associate Research Manager, IDC India, said, “The online channel which contributed to around 39 per cent of total smartphones shipments in Q3’18 cannot be ignored. The launch of M series is indeed a step to counter the affordable segment in the online space, which is currently dominated by Xiaomi, Realme, Honor, etc., as earlier their ‘Galaxy ON series’ has not been able to outpace the Chinese counter parts in the online domain.”

Tarun Pathak, associate director, Counterpoint Research, had recently said, “The top three smartphone brands, Xiaomi, Samsung and Realme captured 57 per cent of the overall Diwali festive season smartphone sales.”

Will it be Samsung vs new players

It is to be noted here that Xiaomi sells smartphones starting from Rs 6,000 and going till Rs 30,000 in India. Most of these smartphones are in the Rs 8,000 to Rs 10,000 category, the same segment that Samsung M-Series is touted to make a debut in. Realme also has a strong presence in the Rs 6,000 to Rs 15,000 smartphone segment in India. Huawei Honor is gaining a lot of the momentum in the category as well.

Faisal Kawoosa, founder, techARC said, “Samsung M-Series is not just about improving online presence. It is to strengthen Samsung’s connect with the millennial generation, which plays a critical role in smartphones market. My understanding is that over 85 per cent of smartphones are either bought by them or the decision is influenced by them. So it is very important for any smartphone brand including Samsung to stay connected with millennials and to be a brand in their recall.”

The banners already placed on Amazon India website confirm a tear drop screen and a rear dual camera setup that one of Samsung M-Series smartphones will feature. Rumours suggest that Samsung will also be launching a 5000 mAH battery M-Series smartphone, and one with three camera setup at the rear. One of Samsung M-Series will also come equipped with brand’s fast charge technology.

Upasana added, “Samsung currently has J series for low and mid-end price segment, A series for mid premium and S series/Note series for premium segments in India. Usually it is a two-pronged approach by Samsung with J series at the low end and S series for premium category customers. The earlier ‘ON series’ of Samsung which were online exclusive had middling demand till now.”

Pathak, in the Counterpoint’s festive smartphone sales report, had added, “Xiaomi sold the most number of smartphones during this period thanks to strong performance in online channels. Xiaomi widened the gap with Samsung which still did relatively well in offline channels capturing 30 per cent share.”

Samsung leads revenue charts, Xiaomi and Realme growing

Xiaomi and Realme are counted among the fastest growing smartphone brands in India. Xiaomi had recently claimed of selling more than one crore Redmi Note 5 Pro smartphones. It has also opened 500 Mi Stores to expand its offline presence in the country. Similarly, Realme has also announced to reach 50 new Indian cities every quarter.

Samsung, on the other hand, is already quite strong in the offline market. However, the number one rank of selling most smartphones online was credited to Xiaomi by many reports recently. It is believed that M-Series smartphones are Samsung’s bid to increase its share in the online smartphone selling space.

Faisal said, “Around 40 per cent of the buyers prefer buying online, and serving through their preferred channel is a sign of importance of customer centricity for a brand. For Samsung, offline is still strong. To regain and then maintain their leadership in Smartphones by volumes as well, they shall have to be active online also. They are already leading the market in revenues and the installed base in India. Online could help them gain the volume leadership as well.”

The South Korea-based tech giant has already announced the construction of the world’s largest smartphone factory in Noida. It had also unveiled world’s largest experience center in Bangalore. The Samsung R&D center in Bangalore is the biggest the brand has outside its home country.

Upasana continued, “The M series by Samsung needs to be power packed with excellent specifications and competitive pricing to counter the remaining models and would require heavy promotional activities and clear demarcation as against their already existing low-end devices of Galaxy J series (mostly selling through offline channel).”

Samsung M-Series smartphones will be unveiled on Amazon on January 28, 2019.

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