As we all know India has become a strong economy and a fierce competitor in international markets; some cities of India are modern and aware of the changing world. Pune, for instance, is one the most vibrant cities where new technology and revolutionary ideas converged, however, India has another face, the middle class population, who has to work hard in order to satisfy their most basic needs before luxury items come to their minds. People in India see the iPhone like the best, more expensive, and almost unobtainable, but that changed when Apple came up with a new idea.
What shifts the market once and for all, was Apple´s understanding of the emerging economies like India and with this they found the formula of success. In April of this year Apple introduced the EMI (equal monthly installment), an aggressive cash back scheme that allow consumers to exchange their old smartphones for a new iPhone 4; also, Indian consumers can give an initial down payment and pay the rest within 6 to 12 months without interest.
The numbers have shown according with Sunil Tirumalai, Vice President of Credit Suisse, that iPhone is selling about 400, 000 units per month compare to the 70, 000 to 80, 000 prior to the new scheme.
So far, Apple owns 3 % of Smartphone market, although it might seem low, proportionally speaking it´s not, because there are 1.2 billion people in India and 27 million are using the iPhone.
It was reported by IDC Research Company that India will become the third largest consumer of Smartphones by 2017 following China and US.
Before the EMI scheme iPhone was sold for $490 dollars and the low end feature phones were selling for $75 to $100. According with IDC the leaders in the Indian market are as they follow: Samsung, Sony, Nokia, Micromax (local), and Karboon (local).
Sunil Tirumalai commented, “The 4-9 percent implicit discount coupled with the option of easy EMIs spread over 6 to 12 months became popular. Within a few months, our discussions with handset retailers indicated that iPhone sales went up 3-4x, forcing companies to respond”.
The company saw the opportunities and advantages that had with the Indian Market; the brand is, in the mind of Indians, the best. The numbers are showing that the race started for Apple; students are getting a discount on purchase of iPhone 4, the American express card holders will get an additional 10 % after buying the iPhone. Will India become the most important market for Apple? Not yet.
There are different things that Apple needs to face, for example: local mobile companies that are growing and becoming powerful, the old Samsung Galaxy Grand Quatro which is selling for Rs 16,570 and has given its customers a 12 month EMI option as well, and finally the income of the average person in India, if all those things are sort out, there is a big chance for Apple to become among the three big sellers.
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