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Apple Inc. Losing Ground In Two Big Markets

A recent research study reveals that Apple Inc.’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhone is failing to gain any traction despite its vigorous attempts to push its way deeper into the Indian smartphone market. According to market research company IDC, the smartphone shipments to India increased 17.1% in the June quarter, but most of the international and domestic companies saw a decrease in shipments, whereas the Chinese companies seized all the growth.

iPhone 5s is preferred over iPhone SE in India

Even the older offerings from Apple are considered as ‘premium’ in India. IDC claimed that in that segment, the iPhone SE did not make any significant impact. Rather, the iPhone 5s contributed the most to Apple’s shares of devices priced at $300 or more.

Korea-based smartphone maker Samsung continues to dominate the Indian smartphone market with 25.1% share and sequential growth of 10.9%. Micromax, Reliance, Lenovo and Intex were among the top five companies. IDC noted that the feature phones still account for more than 50% of the overall Indian smartphone market. However, according to the IDC report, the smartphone market is not expected to contract for the rest of the year because of the contraction of CDMA and the increasing push of LTE networks.

Currently, Apple is in the middle of introducing new retail stores to improve its sales channels in India. Initially, the tech giant was blocked from opening its retail stores by government product sourcing requirements. Recently though, those regulations have been eased.

Recommended article: Piper Jaffray Pounds the Table on Apple

In May, CEO Tim Cook mentioned in an interview with CNBC that Apple’s growth in the country will come to play an important role in the smartphone maker’s future. Recently, the  giant reinforced its commitment to India by leasing 40,000 square-feet for a development center in Bengaluru.

Apple, Xiaomi feeling pressure in China

Meanwhile, the iPhone maker is also feeling pressure in China. Apple was doing steady business in China, but is now facing tough competition from Oppo and Vivo. Even Xiaomi, which overtook Samsung in China two years ago, now faces competition from nimble players, according to a report from CNBC.

Oppo and Vivo, both owned by BBK Electronics Corporation are making a huge impact by getting attention from young buyers, who want high-spec but low-cost smartphones. Data from Counterpoint Research indicates that in the second-quarter of 2014, Xiaomi had a 13.3% market share in the country, but now only has 11.2%. In the same period, the market share of Vivo grew to 14.9% from 2.2% while the market share of Oppo grew to 18% from a mere 2.7%.

Analysts believe the tech giant has faced a decline in revenues because the operators have been decreasing their subsidies, making the iPhone less attractive from a price perspective.


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