India is likely to witness record sales of smartphones this festive season, at around $7.7 billion (over $61,000 crore), and 1 out of every 3 smartphones sold during the festive season will be 5G enabled, a report showed on Tuesday.
E-commerce channels are expected to capture 61 per cent of the overall sales, down from 66 per cent last year, according to Counterpoint Research.
The smartphone retail average selling price (ASP) during the festive season will grow 12 per cent to reach its highest ever at $242, although the unit sales may decline by 9 per cent (on-year).
India's smartphone market is entering this festive season with the highest ever channel inventory of over 10 weeks, the report noted.
"The festive season has been the highlight of India's smartphone market where almost 20 per cent of the annual sales happen over four-five weeks. Hence, this festive period is important for all the players in the value chain," said senior analyst Prachir Singh.
This year, the sales will start on September 23 with Amazon's Great India Festival and Flipkart's Big Billion Days.
"According to our forecast, the festive season smartphone sales will account for around $7.7 billion, the highest ever. However, we estimate a 9 per cent YoY decline in terms of shipments. We have seen a similar trend in China's 618 festival this year, where shipments declined 10 per cent YoY," Singh noted.
The festive shopping season will end with the Diwali sale.
According to Research Director Tarun Pathak, the retail ASP (average selling price), similar to the total value, will be the highest ever and may record 12-15 per cent YoY growth.
The consumer demand is likely to be high, especially in the mid-tier and premium segments. The various promotions and offers targeting the Rs 15,000 segments have already been announced by the brands and channels on social media.
"The increasing affordability of these devices due to promotions and offers will drive their sales. This will be further supported by the 4G-to-5G migration. According to our estimates, one out of every three smartphones sold during the festive season will be a 5G smartphone," said Pathak.
In terms of channels, the offline market players are pushing promotions and offers that are on par with their online counterparts.
"The entry-tier and budget segments have witnessed a considerable decline in recent quarters. However, we expect these segments to grow during the festive season, though the growth may be limited as the consumers in these segments have been under pressure due to macroeconomic headwinds," Pathak added.