The unfolding opportunity of foldable smartphones

The Indian smartphone market is poised for a remarkable shift with the emergence of foldable smartphones. These innovative devices are projected to make a significant impact by contributing over 1.8% to the total smartphone revenues, with an impressive sales projection of more than 635,000 units during the year. 

This surge in sales signifies the growing popularity and transformative potential of foldable smartphones in India’s dynamic smartphone industry.

Foldable smartphone

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In the dynamic landscape of the Indian smartphone market, a remarkable shift is anticipated with the rise of foldable smartphones. According to market analyst firm Techarc, the revenue generated by these innovative devices is poised to exceed Rs 6,300 crore by the close of 2023.

This surge in sales can be attributed to the compelling value proposition presented by smartphone makers in the foldable segment, as well as the growing trend of affordability within this niche.

Growth Projections

Techarc further predicts that in 2023, foldable smartphones will make a significant impact by contributing over 1.8% to the total smartphone revenues, with an impressive sales projection of more than 635,000 units during the year.

“With the growing adoption of foldable smartphones, and increasing competition amongst OEMs, the average selling price (ASP) for foldable phones is anticipated to drop further by 12-15% in 2023,” said Menka Kumari, Analyst- Industry Intelligence Group (IIG), CMR.

In 2022, around 0.5 million units of foldable smartphones were sold in India. However, the current year is expected to witness a marginal increase, reaching approximately 0.8 million units. This growth projection is significant as consumers are increasingly favouring premium handsets, and smartphone makers have addressed affordability concerns through financing schemes.

Despite macroeconomic challenges, the overall foldable smartphone market is projected to experience a robust year-over-year growth of over 65% in 2023, according to a report by Cyber Media Research (CMR).

Transformative Landscape of Foldable Smartphones

The research firm predicts the introduction of a new breed of foldable smartphones in the price range of Rs 60,000-Rs 75,000, potentially accounting for 10% of the total foldable smartphone market. Looking ahead, these foldable devices within the Rs 60,000-Rs 75,000 price range are expected to achieve a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 52% in India by 2026.

These trends highlight the evolving preferences of Indian consumers and the promising future of foldable smartphones in the country’s dynamic smartphone market. In the realm of foldable smartphones, the market is categorized into two variants: H-fold (flip smartphones) and V-fold (book fold smartphones). Techarc estimates that flip smartphones will account for 64% of the sales in 2023.

Since the initial introduction of foldable smartphones in 2019, the shipment volume has witnessed a staggering increase of over 35 times by the end of CY2022. Samsung has played a pivotal role in driving the growth of the foldable market thus far. As technology continues to advance and the market matures, there is immense potential for the mass adoption of foldable smartphones, as highlighted by CMR.

To gain further insights, Techarc conducted a survey among 650 users of high-end smartphones priced above Rs 50,000. The findings revealed that ease of content consumption emerged as the primary reason for considering this unique form factor for purchase. However, concerns surrounding durability remained a significant inhibiting factor, causing hesitation among potential buyers.

These observations shed light on the captivating allure of foldable smartphones while also addressing the prevailing concerns of consumers. As the market continues to evolve, it will be intriguing to witness how the balance between innovation, user preferences, and durability is struck in the foldable smartphone landscape.

Summing Up

In conclusion, the rise of foldable smartphones in the Indian market presents significant revenue growth and market potential. To capitalize on this opportunity, manufacturers should focus on reducing prices, enhancing durability, and optimizing the content consumption experience. By addressing these aspects, they can drive mass adoption and unlock the transformative potential of foldable smartphones in India.

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