Asian Smartphone Market: India Leads Growth as China Continues to Slow in 2014 Q3, IDC Reports

Asian Smartphone Market: India Leads Growth as China Continues to Slow in 2014 Q3, IDC Reports

Singapore and Hong Kong, December 2, 2014 – According to the latest research from International Data Corporation (IDC), the smartphone market in Asia/Pacific excluding Japan (APEJ) posted a moderate 6% Quarter-on-Quarter (QoQ) and 24% Year-on-Year (YoY) growth in 2014 Q3. This trend reflects a decline in growth from previous years and is a result of its largest market, China, having seen the last of the heydays of heady growth in the smartphone market. During the same period, growth in China slowed down to 1% QoQ, while other emerging markets in APEJ surged ahead with 22% growth. The tier-1 Chinese vendors have extended their reach outside of PRC and their shipment contribution from APEJ countries excluding PRC has increased over the past few quarters.

Table 1.

APEJ Smartphone Shipments by Vendor, 2014 Q3 vs 2014 Q2 and 2013 Q3

Rank Vendor 2014 Q3

Market Share

2014 Q2

Market Share

2013 Q3

Market Share

Year-on-Year Unit Growth
1 Samsung 16.0% 16.0% 24.8% -20.3%
2 Xiaomi 10.4% 8.9% 4.2% 210.2%
3 Lenovo 9.1% 9.4% 8.9% 27.0%
4 Huawei 6.6% 8.5% 6.3% 29.7%
5 OPPO 5.7% 3.9% 3.2% 121.9%
Others 52.1% 53.3% 52.6% 22.6%
Total 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 23.8%

 Source: IDC Asia/Pacific Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, December 2, 2014.

India led QoQ smartphone growth in the region with 23 million units shipped in 2014 Q3, and added around 5 million units to the market over 2014 Q2. The local vendors in India, particularly Micromax and Lava, gained most from increased shipments of the 4.5″ to 5” smartphone category priced at around US$100. As a result, Micromax has extended its leadership in India and claimed 20% share in the India smartphone market in 2014 Q3. Other emerging countries in the region also showed high growth rates and together shipped 23 million smartphone units in 2014 Q3. In particular, Thailand, Philippines and Indonesia surged ahead in South East Asia (SEA) with almost double the shipments in 2014 Q3 compared to a year ago.

Overall, local and Chinese vendors have gained at the cost of global vendors. The impact was more pronounced in SEA where global vendors’ share dropped from 62% in 2013 Q3 to 43% in 2014 Q3. “The local vendors have leveraged their strengths and understanding of the local market, coupled with aggressive marketing to grow their scale in the <US$100 segment. On the other hand, the Chinese vendors have been more focused in the price segment US$100-US$200, are also trying to differentiate through concerted moves into the mid-range to-high-end segments as well,” says Kiranjeet Kaur, Senior Market Analyst of Client Devices Research at IDC Asia/Pacific.

IDC expects the share of phablets (5.5″<7″ screen size) to steadily increase from 16% in 2014 to 34% in 2018. “In mature markets, we expect large screen iPhones to be the key driver, while in emerging markets, budget phones on Android operating system in the 5.5″<6″ category are expected to have a strong growth momentum. Even as 7” voice calling tablets are gaining traction in the emerging markets in the region, the more “mobile” phablets will continue to gain momentum, as we have yet to see a significant proportion of consumers who buy the voice calling tablets actually using it as their primary phone,” adds Kaur.


Table 2. APEJ Smartphone Forecast by Region (units in millions)
Region 2014* Shipment Volumes 2014* Market Share 2014*

YoY Growth

2018* Shipment Volumes 2018* Market Share 2018*

YoY Growth

5 year CAGR
Emerging Markets 584.9 91.1% 32.1% 916.3 94.0% 9.9% 15.7%
Mature Markets 57.0 8.9% 0.6% 59.0 6.0% -0.1% 0.8%
Total 641.9 100.0% 28.5% 975.3 100.0% 9.3% 14.3%


Source: IDC Asia/Pacific Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, December 2, 2014.

* Forecast data


Table Note: Mature Markets include Australia, New Zealand, Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Emerging Markets include India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, the PRC, Thailand, Vietnam and Rest of Asia/Pacific countries.

For more information about the research or to purchase this data, please contact Sheryl Fuertez at +65-6829-7758 or sfuertez If you would like to be on our mailing list for IDC’s Asia/Pacific press release, please register here.

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About IDC

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