Analyst Insight by Wee Tek Loo - Head of Consumer Electronics
At the recently concluded Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2014, Microsoft Corp announced nine new Windows Phone partners, including Karbonn Mobile India Pvt Ltd and LAVA International Ltd from India. One month on from MWC 2014, these manufacturers have finally announced their plans for smartphones running on the Windows Phone operating system (OS) to be sold in India.
Feature Phones Rule in India
With only 3% of the 951 million mobile phone subscriptions offering internet capability in 2013, feature phones continue to be the category’s dominant volume driver in the country. India also has one of the lowest annual gross incomes and hence take-up of smartphones.
Annual Gross Income 2013
Source: Euromonitor International
Note: US$ fixed 2013 rate
While the prices of smartphones have fallen dramatically, the humble feature phone continues to be considerably cheaper. Touch screens, larger screen sizes, an internal memory, licensing costs for 3G capabilities and internet capability all contribute to higher smartphone prices.