Xiaomi and Huawei look to challenge Apple and Samsung in Australasia
Although Apple’s iPhone and Samsung’s Galaxy are still the most popular mobile phones in Australia, large drops in sales for rivals Sony, HTC and LG reveal even cheaper alternatives are beginning to take over a share of the market.
Second-quarter results from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech show 34.6 per cent of cell phones purchased in Australia were iPhones, which is an increase of 25.5 per cent from one year earlier. Meanwhile, Android phones comprised of 57.6 per cent of Aussie sales in the second quarter— a drop of 10.6 per cent largely due to Apple’s 9.1 per cent increase.
However, a slide in sales for competitors have led to the realisation that other less expensive brands have been on the rise in an attempt to compete with Apple and Samsung.
In China, Apple ranks third behind Chinese companies Xiaomi and Huawei despite its increased sales.
China is the world’s largest smartphone market, and competition between brands has become more intriguing than ever. With Chinese consumers purchasing more phones from their domestic vendors, many are settling for cheaper options that have similar attributes.
When Xiaomi’s Mi Note hit the Chinese market in January, it began at a relatively low price of $487, while Apple’s iPhone 6 Plus began at about $1,286.
Meanwhile, Xiaomi’s Chinese rival Huawei actually increased the price of its devices, which helped it nearly double the company’s handset revenue to $7.23 billion in the first half of 2015. In an attempt to make itself the top provider of premium smartphones in China, Huawei’s profits have risen 87 per cent on the year.
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And while Huawei’s average selling price has gone up, so has its demand. With shipments during the six-month period increasing to 39 per cent from the previous year, the data proves the company’s product strategy is indeed working.
Samsung smartphones make up 40.2 per cent of the Australian market, as 69.5 per cent of Android phones purchased are made by Samsung, which is an increase of 61 per cent from June 2014.
Last month, Samsung’s second-quarter earnings were much lower than expected for its new Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge, mostly due to the ever-changing smartphone market. Although the phones received strong, favorable reviews, revenue dropped 8.4 per cent from the same period in 2014.
While Apple and Samsung both are running strong in Australia, the popularity of more economical brands is on the rise.
Source: Financial Review
Timeline: India takes unicorn leap with six in five days
We chart an historic week in India’s tech industry, where in just five days, between 5-9 April 2021, the country achieved six new unicorns, bringing India’s total to 10 in 2021 to date, an immense unicorn leap from just seven in 2020 and six in 2019.
April 5: Meesho
India’s first social commerce unicorn, Meesho raised US$300m from SoftBank, Facebook and Shunwei Capital, giving the Bangalore-based startup a US$2.1bn valuation, a threefold jump from its previous funding round in 2019. Founded in 2015 by two IIT-Delhi graduates, Meesho connects producers and resellers, helping small businesses sell through social media. It has 45m customers and has enabled 13m entrepreneurs to start their online businesses with no investment.
April 6: CRED
Founded just over two years ago, Bangalore-based credit card repayment app CRED raised US$215m from Falcon Edge Capital and Coatue, nearly trebling its valuation to US$2.2bn from its January US$80m round. Allowing customers to pay off their credit card debt while earning CRED coins which they cash in for rewards, CRED has grown rapidly during COVID-19, doubling its customer base to nearly 6 million in a year.
April 7: API Holdings / Groww
The first epharmacy startup to gain unicorn status, PharmEasy (API Holdings), which has digitised 60,000 brick and mortar pharmacies and 400 doctors across India, raised US$350m in a round led by Prosus Ventures. Founded by four former Flipkart employees as a way of making investing simple, investment platform Groww became India’s second-youngest fintech unicorn, raising US$83m in Series D funding led by Tiger Global, quadrupling its previous round in September.
April 8: ShareChat
New Delhi-grown social media startup ShareChat, founded in 2016 by Mohalla Tech raised US$502m from Lightspeed Ventures, Tiger Global, Twitter and Snap taking its raised total over six rounds to US$766m and pushing its valuation to US$2.1bn. The funding will be used to grow its user base and short video platform Moj, which launched in 2020 following TikTok’s ban in India. The regional language startup claims 280m users.
April 9: Gupshup
AI-led conversational message startup joined the unicorn club after raising US$100m from Tiger Global giving it a ten-fold valuation of US$1.4bn. The smart messaging platform, which has seen accelerated growth during the pandemic, was founded in Bangalore in 2005 by serial entrepreneur Beerud Sheth, whose online freelancing platform Elance is now listed. Gupshup’s API enables 100,000+ businesses to build messaging and conversation experiences across 30+ communication channels.