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One Out of Three Consumers Consider Latest Specification While Buying New Smartphone

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According to the International Data Corporation’s (IDC) Consumer PULSE research study on the smartphone consumer trends in India, one out of three consumers consider availability of good deals and experiencing latest specification or feature as the prime reasons for buying a new smartphone. This can be attributed to multiple sales events backed by high decibel marketing especially by eTailers with attractive financing schemes helping drive affordability.

Word of mouth continue to be the most prominent source influencing the consumer buying behavior for smartphones. This has been a key factor for success of brands like Xiaomi, OnePlus with their unique go to market approach and spreading the word of mouth augmented by dedicated fan-based community. Brand trust is the highest influencing factor for two third of Xiaomi consumers, followed by value for money proposition and availability of latest specifications.

According to Sachin Mehta, Market Analyst, IDC India “In terms of specifications, consumers have many choices especially from China based vendors at affordable prices. Currently, RAM and processing speed are the most preferred specifications followed by bigger battery size and superior camera quality. Additionally, features like face unlock and waterproofing are yet to gain importance amongst consumers.”

Very popular with Indian consumers for a variety of reasons. Convenience being one of the most important and basic reasons almost 40% of consumers prefer online channel for the overall comfort and convenience, followed by prices offered by eTailers. In terms of mode of payment while buying a smartphone, EMI options as a choice for payment has increased, followed closely by use of Debit/Credit cards owing to multiple tie ups by eTailers with Banks for cash back offers.” says Upasana Joshi, Associate Research

Manager, Channel Research, IDC India.

Within offline channel, two out three consumers visit offline retailer stores to have a hand on experience of the device before making the final purchase. Also, more than half of offline consumers feel that the next vital factor is the near to home convenience which in turn drives the retailer/promoter push at the shop counter in deciding the brand and model choice for the consumer. Consumers continue to prefer paying through cash on retail counters, however a steady uptake is witnessed in payment options through EMIs (Equated Monthly Installment) and Debit/Credit cards. Also, more than half of the offline consumers visit a multi brand outlet, of which two third finally bought the smartphone from these outlets signifying the continued relevance of offline channel in India market.

Survey highlights:

  • With the wider availability of financing, around half of the consumers who had spent INR10K-20K on their previous smartphones upgraded to INR30K+ segment.
  • China based vendors such as Xiaomi, vivo and OPPO are perceived as great value for money brands for their superior quality and design and delivering on what they promise.
  • Offers and recommendation from family & friends remains the key influencers in the final purchase.
  • Overall consumers who visit online stores consider Flipkart as their first choice. However, premium smartphone (INR 30K+) consumers prefer Amazon for buying a smartphone.
  • In offline, apart from multi-brand outlets (MBOs), Reliance Digital stores are emerging as a strong choice for buying premium end devices owing to availability of better discounts and offers and store presence across India.

Premium segment (INR 30K+) highlights:

  • Apart from good deals/offers, experiencing a new technology/feature is another key reason while making purchase decision.
  • Online reviews emerge as one of the key source before making final purchase in the
  • OnePlus is the most preferred premium android smartphone brand, especially for consumers who are looking for an Android smartphone. 90% of OnePlus buyers’ first choice is OnePlus as it offers latest specifications and trust the brand
  • Apple continues to drive high loyalty amongst its consumers.

IDC India Smartphone PULSE is an extensive smartphone end consumer facing research program covering 8 major cities of India with a sample size of 1700 consumer. It gives detailed and definite insights on the FTBs (First time buyers), pre and post purchase process, channel preference, deep dive on specification choices, price shift patterns, upgrade cycle and future buying preferences of consumers, thereby helping in understanding the overall consumer buying habits for smartphones in India.

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Dinesh Nair Appointed as Director for Consumer Business Lenovo India

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Global technology leader Lenovo has appointed Dinesh Nair as Director, Consumer Business for India region. Dinesh succeeds Mr. Shailendra Katyal, who has recently been appointed Site Leader for Lenovo India and Managing Director of Lenovo’s PC and smart device business in India. 

Dinesh Nair has been an integral part of the Lenovo India consumer business for more than 11 years and has worked successfully across several roles. His most recent role was as the sales & channel management lead for Lenovo’s consumer segment in India. He has handled leadership responsibilities across offline general trade retail, distribution management, field sales, eCommerce, large format retail and category management, and has been a key contributor to the company’s growth journey in India. 

“During this difficult time in India, we are working hard to ensure the safety of our employees, partners and customers and I am grateful that we have excellent leaders in place to bring our team together and offer this support. I am proud to hand over the reins of the consumer business to Dinesh. At the same time, this is a demonstration of our commitment to developing talent internally. I am sure he, along with the consumer leadership team, will propel the business to new heights,” said Shailendra Katyal, Managing Director, Lenovo India.

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ASUS ROG Announces ROG Masters Asia Pacific eSports Tournament

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ASUS ROG will host its first ROG Masters Asia Pacific eSports tournament from March to April 2021. Due to COVID-19 pandemic affecting travel around the region, the tournament will be conducted entirely online, with quarterfinal to final matches livestreamed.

The ROG Masters tournament will feature Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) as the official game title will provide opportunity to teams with enthusiastic players to pitch their skills against each other, as well as the best professional teams from their market and in the region.

Tournament Structure

The tournament will see various teams from 15 markets across the region vying for the chance to be crowned as the first ROG Masters Asia Pacific Edition CS:GO Champion. 

The tournament will be played in three stages played over the course of 2 months:

  • Country qualifiers
  • Country finals
  • Asia Pacific finals

Country qualifiers matches for India will start in the second week of April 2021; 8th April and the finals to be held on the 10th April. The India finals to find the top three teams to represent the country will be livestreamed live on 10th April.

Professional teams from across the region will be automatically placed into seeded positions in the country finals. This gives a greater chance for non-professional, enthusiast teams from India to get through the qualifiers and meet the pro teams in the country finals. 

Country Champions will then go on to experience battling winning teams from other APAC markets in the finals that will be livestreamed during 22nd to 25th April 2021.

Prizes

3 qualifying teams from India finals will stand to win US$800 for first place, US$400 for second place, US$200 for third place. They will then go on to the Asia Pacific finals with the chance to win the following prizes for the championship:

ROG Masters APAC ChampionshipAPAC Finals (USD/ team)
1st$10,000
2nd$3,500
3rd$1,500

Registration and Official Tournament Website

Registration for the first ROG Masters Asia Pacific tournament opens on February 8, 2021 at the tournament’s official website.

Registration closes on February 28, 2021 Further details, match schedules, pro team information as well as rules and regulations can also be found on the tournament website.

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Garena Launches Free Fire South Asia Showdown: Battle of the Stars

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Garena has announced the Free Fire South Asia Showdown: Battle of the Stars, Free Fire’s first-ever esports tournament for the South Asia region. Taking place on 6 February, the tournament will feature some of the gaming community’s favourite Free Fire streamers and personalities from India, Pakistan, Nepal, and Bangladesh.

The Free Fire community has continued to expand in South Asia and across the world, with the mobile battle royale game the most downloaded mobile game globally in 2020, according to App Annie. Through the Free Fire South Asia Showdown: Battle of the Stars, Garena will look to continue its efforts to excite and delight its fast-growing South Asian community with exciting Free Fire content, and to support and develop the incredible online community in the region.

Tournament Format

The Free Fire South Asia Showdown: Battle of the Stars will feature a total of 12 teams. Each team will be led by one of the top 3 streamers from each of the 4 participating nations – chosen by public voting – in this epic clash to determine the best in the region. 

The 12 teams will compete in the Battle Royale Squad mode for a slice of the 1 million diamond prize pool. The ultimate winner of this star-studded tournament will receive 500,000 in-game diamonds; the first and and second runners-up will be awarded 300,000 and 200,000 diamonds respectively. 

Invited Teams

The Free Fire South Asia Showdown: Battle of the Stars will feature some of the most popular streamers and personalities from across South Asia. 

The team captains for each nation are: 

India

  • Total Gaming (19.4 Million YT Subs)
  • Desi Gamers (7.8 Million YT Subs)
  • Two-Side Gamers (6.85 Million YT Subs)

Bangladesh

  • Gaming with Nayeem (1.6 Million YT Subs)
  • Illusionist YT (479K YT Subs)
  • Gaming With Zihad (698K YT Subs)

Nepal 

  • Sooneeta (3.26 Million YT Subs)
  • Bshow Mgr (399K YT Subs)
  • Tonde Gamer (2.37 Million YT Subs)

Pakistan

  • RKG ARMY (1.77 Million YT Subs)
  • Unusual Gamer (81K YT Subs)
  • The Skinzo FF (75.5K YT Subs)

Broadcast Details:

Fans can witness all the high-octane action by tuning in to the live broadcasts of the Free Fire South Asia Showdown: Battle of the Stars. These will be hosted on Free Fire Esports India YouTube and Facebook, Free Fire Bangladesh Official YouTube and Facebook, as well as on BOOYAH!. 

To cater to the diverse South Asian community, the matches will be streamed with live commentary in 5 languages – Bengali, English, Hindi, Nepali and Urdu.

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