Smartphone Makers Should Avoid Launching Affordable 5G Devices in India for Now

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Indian Telecom operators are already testing their 5G solutions in different parts of the country. However, the commercial 5G networks won’t be live until Q2 of CY22 at least. Regardless, the mobile brands are coming out with 5G devices to fulfil the small gap in the market where users want to own a 5G smartphone. It is interesting to note that Indians aren’t buying cheap 5G smartphones. It might sound strange to you, but it actually makes sense. Kunal Sarkar, Vice President, PredictiVu, told Telecomtalk that 94% of the 5G smartphones that were sold in India during January 2021 to April 2021 period were flagship devices.

Indians Don’t Want Cheap 5G Smartphones

According to the data that Sarkar shared, in terms of volume, 57% of the 5G smartphones sold during the same period as mentioned above were priced between Rs 20,000 to Rs 30,000. Further, 38% of the 5G smartphones in terms of volume sold were priced more than Rs 30,000. Only 5% of the 5G smartphones that were sold were between Rs 15,000 to Rs 20,000.

This is a clear indicator that Indians understand that there’s no real value in investing in a cheap 5G smartphone that the companies are offering with fewer features just to ensure that it is affordable and also comes with 5G support. Instead, Indians are either going for a mid-range or an upper-end 5G smartphone that comes with all the desired features.

Only 6% of the smartphones sold during the period were non-flagships. This further shows that if it is a 5G smartphone, Indians don’t want to spend much on non-flagship devices. This will change in the future once the cost of 5G chipsets is brought down, and it becomes feasible for the smartphone companies to launch good 5G smartphones at a lower price. At present, it is better to invest in a good low-end 4G smartphone with a ton of features than a lower-end 5G smartphone with basic features.

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Tanay is someone with whom you can chill and talk about technology and life. A fitness enthusiast and cricketer, he loves to read and write.


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