The global handset industry continues to grow and fragment. Due to platform facilitators like MediaTek, manufacturing a 2G cellphone is easier than ever. These trends have led to the emergence of a long tail
of dozens of microvendors, mostly from China and India. Numerous microvendors have benefitted from the surging demand for low-cost 2G phones in rural and suburban markets. According to our Handset Country Share Tracker (HCST) report
for Asia, leading microvendors Micromax
are ranked among the top 6 brands in their domestic markets of India and China.
What have been the main reasons for the microvendors' growth?
• OEM-partnered low-cost handset solutions;
• Strong ultra-low- and entry-level portfolios at very competitive price-points;
• Innovative features for local needs and tastes, such as 30-day standby battery (important feature for regular electricity deprived rural markets), torch-light, theft tracker, multimedia player, video call, AM/FM Radio and dual-SIM;
• Extensive retail distribution footprints;
• Aggressive advertising and brand promotions;
The microvendors have gone after first-time and second-time buyers and emerged with some success. However, key questions that arise are -- how many
microvendors are successfully selling and how have they originated? Is there any major differentiation between their offerings? How are the microvendors positioning their brands? What are the microvendors doing in order to compete at the next level, such as 3G smartphones?
Thus, starting in Q1 2010, we are now actively tracking an additional 25 emerging microvendors
every quarter. These top 25 microvendors have captured a combined 4% global marketshare. Micromax and Spice top our rankings, which include other vendors from diverse industries such as consumer electronics and personal computing. We expect the long tail of Asian vendors will remain active for the foreseeable future, as they focus their efforts on a next wave of emerging 3G handset growth in 2011.
Our published Microvendors report for Q1 2010 is available to download for clients here