Amid a decline in smartphone purchases, Transsion Holding, the parent company of TECNO, Infinix, and itel, continues to experience significant growth in Africa and other emerging markets. However, how do other competitors fare in this challenging landscape?
The decline in smartphone purchases can be attributed to rising prices in recent times. Several factors contribute to this trend, including strained supply chains, unfavorable dollar exchange rates, and overall inflation. Another factor is the remarkable durability of modern smartphones, which reduces the need for frequent replacements. Unlike in the past, when users would buy new phones due to issues like faulty software, poor battery life, or failing hardware, today’s devices are more resilient, leading users to hold onto them for longer periods.
Research firm Canalysis has recently released data that sheds light on the global market share of various phone brands. The numbers reveal an intriguing picture of the African market, where affordability remains a key factor driving purchasing decisions. Among the brands targeting the budget segment, Chinese manufacturers, particularly Transsion Holdings, have excelled. Transsion, renowned for its affordable devices produced under brands like TECNO, Infinix, itel, Oraimo (accessories), and Syinix (TVs), holds a dominant position.
In the first quarter, Transsion secured the top spot in Africa’s smartphone market share with 48%. Although its annual growth rate experienced a 13% decline, the company maintains a strong presence on the continent. Samsung followed closely with a 30% market share. Three Chinese brands occupied the third, fourth, and fifth positions, with Xiaomi at 6%, OPPO at 4%, and realme at 3%. All brands, except realme, witnessed a decline in annual growth, while realme’s growth rate soared by 11 percentage points.
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In Morocco and Algeria, Samsung led the market in the first quarter, capturing 51% and 34% respectively. Transsion held the second position in Morocco with 19%, while Xiaomi, OPPO, and realme followed suit. Only Xiaomi displayed positive annual growth at 16%. In Algeria, realme claimed the second spot with 31%, trailed by Xiaomi at 18%. Both second-place brands experienced significant annual growth, with realme soaring at a staggering +412% and Xiaomi at +40%. Transsion and Apple rounded out the top five, commanding 13% and 1% respectively. It is noteworthy that Apple, known for its high-priced devices, made its first appearance in these rankings, despite its limited sales presence in Africa due to affordability constraints.
Comment of TECNO Representative on The Smartphone Dominance
Commenting on the performance of the brand, Mildred Agoya, the PR & Marketing Manager of realme Kenya, expressed satisfaction with the increasing popularity of smartphones across different segments, particularly the entry-level segment, among the youthful customer base in the three countries. She emphasized their commitment to meeting the evolving needs of customers even in challenging times by offering innovative solutions and budget-friendly devices.
In contrast, Transsion, the standout performer in these statistics, recently introduced the TECNO Camon 20 series of devices, which has sparked discussions about whether TECNO is moving away from its affordable pricing bracket. Notably, the TECNO Camon 20 Premium, priced at $400 or more depending on the specifications, indicates a departure from TECNO’s reputation as a “budget” brand. This shift is further highlighted by the introduction of the TECNO Phantom V Fold, a high-end device priced at $1000, signaling TECNO’s desire to dissociate itself from previous assumptions. Additionally, TECNO plans to launch a flipping device called the Phantom V Flip, further cementing its move towards premium offerings.
TECNO, Infinix, and itel continue to dominate the African smartphone market, showcasing their popularity and affordability in the region’s budget-conscious consumer landscape.
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