A recent research paper by leading affiliate marketing agency ENV Media looks at the mobile devices that most Indian gamers use. Mostly running Android, Chinese brands shape user experience and help close the urban-rural gap. Other websites thats been analysed in the report are 10Cric.com
“Domestic” Chinese Brands Top Rankings
Researchers have segmented the aggregated data provided by SevenJackpots.com during the first four months of 2021. Organic search data provides insights on smartphone brands and State origin measured in visits, sessions and clicks.
Beyond any doubt, those who play real-money games and online lottery in India use handheld devices, with a share approaching 90%. Out of these, Chinese-origin brands also dominate the market, with the right balance between being affordable, efficient and popular.
Offshore gambling and legal lottery games are most commonly accessed with a Xiaomi (23.38%), ahead of Samsung (19.24%) and Vivo (15.25%). OPPO and Realme close out the top 5 with a 10% market share each. Over at the premium smartphone segment, OnePlus is rivaling Apple but both have a modest market share of around 3%.
These figures are close to official sales reports in India. The fact of the matter is, all of the above leading brands have already established a manufacturing presence in India. Samsung is the only notable non-Chinese exception, yet both the Koreans and US giants Apple have their factories or shared production lines in Bharat.
Android Stands Unrivalled
With the top six Android phones accounting for 89% of the entire market, the Google OS has no real competitors at this point. By year-end 2020 Android held 95.23% of the Indian while iOS was a distant second with 3.2%. Android held merely 10% in 2012 but has grown into a powerhouse without alternatives in sight.
Survey results point to some evident reasons for its success – the affordable price and overall accessibility of Android phones in India, the open nature of the OS (allowing desi tech startups to operate freely with it) and the local production facilities which enable companies to capture consumers with attractive offers.
Most tech reviews online and social media influencers regularly show Android phones in their messages and campaigns, boosting further their popularity across India.
Government Incentives Hit the Mark
The cited presence of electronics factories putting out millions of smartphones every year is not to be underestimated. With industrial complexes in Noida (UP, nearby Delhi), Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh, all market leaders – Xiaomi, Samsung, Oppo, Realme, Vivo and OnePlus – push for even better results.
The Government’s “Make in India” initiative offers important incentives to these foreign companies for transferring manufacturing capacities in India. Even Apple recently established production lines for almost $1 billion through its contract manufacturers.
Apple Seen Mostly in Tier-1 Cities
The latter move was fundamental for the American tech giant. It enabled Apple to sell directly its products on the market via physical stores – with the first official store announced for the end part of 2021.
Indeed, researchers expected Apple to do better only in large urban areas. A previous market survey emphasized the influence of India’s richest cities on the gaming and lottery scene. It also concluded, however, that metro users have somewhat different consumption patterns than the rest of Bharat.
iPhone sales in the past couple of years have also been undermined by app support problems (Maps and Siri more than anything) and Apple Pay integration due to technical issues with local banks. Yet, with better offers targeting the Indian market specifically – and with the help of its dedicated online and land-based stores – Apple may be expected to improve its performance within a few years’ time.
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