SMT to fuel feature phone demand in India in 2019

19 Feb 2019

According to CMR’s India Mobile Handset Market Review Report for CY2018 the share of Completely Knocked Down (CKD) manufacturing increased by 43% from Q1 to Q4 2018, to end at 57%. On the other hand, Semi Knocked Down (SKD) manufacturing declined by half from 61% in Q1 2018, ending at around 38% in Q4 2018.

Flextronics, Samsung and Rising Stars Mobile were the top three ODMs in India, accounting for more than 50% market share.

Commenting on the major trends witnessed, CMR lead analyst-IIG Narinder Kumar said, “Surface Mount Technology (SMT) manufacturing in India is currently smartphone-centric. There is a clear momentum with all top five major smartphone players, including the likes of Xiaomi, OPPO and

VIVO ramping up their SMT capacities. When it comes to Indian players, its only Lava that’s showing promise,” he added.

In CY2018, as a result of SMT manufacturing, there was a 20% YoY decline in approximate number of SKUs. In comparison, there was a mere 7% sequential decline in SKUs in CY2017.

CMR believes that in CY2019, SMT manufacturing will see more uptake in feature phone segment.

“Beyond the likes of Samsung and Lava, we anticipate the entry of other major feature phone players into SMT Manufacturing,” added Narinder.

CY2019 forecast

CMR anticipates overall mobile handset shipments to top 345M in CY2019, with smartphones growing at 10-15% YoY, while 2G feature phones are anticipated to decline by around 12-15% YoY.

“Smartphone shipments will see growth in the year ahead. We anticipate 2019 to be the year of radical smartphone innovation, with major evolution in form factors. On the other hand, while 2G feature phone shipments decline, we anticipate 4G feature phones will remain steady,” CMR analyst-IIG Swati Kalia added.

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