Smartphones & sports create mutual market growth


The smartphone market is growing fast. Set to touch 62% share of the Indian mobile handset market. Courtesy, government push of e-transactions, increasing net connectivity. The war to grab the major chunk of this market share is set to intensify. Cricket in particular and sports in general are set to make a parallel gain from the emerging scenario.

Tuhin Mishra: “Cricket historically has been a choice of for mobile market and has done well for brands associated with it. Micromax is one good example. There were Nokia and Reliance handsets in the past,” says Mr Tuhin Mishra, MD and co-founder of Baseline Ventures. “It’s about the budge you create. Oppo, Vivo are prime examples of share of voice means share of mind,” he adds.


“As the Indian cellular market goes through consolidation and aggressive 4G roll out, demand for smartphones will continue to grow,” according to a research report from Gartner, an American research and advisory firm providing information technology related insight, quoted by Brandequity ET. “With smartphone penetration maturing in many developed markets, continued growth in the world’s 3rd largest smartphone market makes India an attractive market. Smartphones in India are expected to account for 62% of all mobile phones sales in the country in 2018,” it said.

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The market players, fighting for every inch in this competitive, are active to gain the most out of it. Mobile handset market Q1 data for 2017 suggest that cricket has given instant results. Team India’s new sponsor Oppo and IPL lead sponsor Vivo have made significant gains much before their appearance on these two most precious marketing spaces. The news of association was enough to give these two brand the best push in the market. Vivo made a 66% gain over their market share in the previous quarter to jump to the second position behind market leader Samsung. Oppo is the second best in terms of rise in sales, a 28% rise over the 8.6% market share the brand had in October-December quarter last year.

This is bound to intensify the demand for prime cricket spots. This is a normal phenomenon, if demand goes up price will go up. Then categories get blocked. For example if Vivo has got IPL mandate, no other mobile brand will feature there. Then you turn towards teams. Beyond that there is a space in other sports. “Brands should also look towards other sports. When you are going sports connect is more. In sport passion connects the brand with its consumer. Thus there is more loyalty,” observed Mr Mishra.