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Xiaomi and Lenovo climb in India’s smart phone market as local players falter

The smartphone market in India has enjoyed 20% growth year on year in the third quarter of 2016, with shipments breaking the 30 million mark.

According to the latest research from Canalys, Samsung's shipments grew in line with the market, meaning it continued to lead with a share of just over 20%.

The figures show shipments from local players Micromax, Intex and Lava all fell year on year, allowing Lenovo to move above Micromax and into second place for the first time, while Xiaomi took fourth place, more than doubling its Q2 2016 shipments.

According to Rushabh Doshi, Canalys analyst, India has now clearly emerged as a growth opportunity for Xiaomi outside of its home market.

“Indian consumers are increasingly looking past local players' smart phones in favor of international brands,” Doshi says.

“There is ongoing portfolio consolidation as local players change their product strategies, emphasising the 4G-enabled models that are now becoming mainstream,” he explains.

“Besides having a strong LTE portfolio, channel strategy is increasingly important for smart phone success,” Doshi adds.

“Lenovo's focus on offline channels and Xiaomi's move away from being an online-only vendor have clearly helped,” he says.

“Xiaomi's shipments grew by almost 170% year on year, with its strongest quarter taking it to fourth place in an increasingly competitive market,” says Doshi.

“Despite its smartphone shipments halving, Micromax held onto third place, but it is coming under pressure from Xiaomi and fifth-placed Lyf,” he says.

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