From mobiles to TVs, Indians are buying ‘smart’ gadgets

Indian consumers are shifting towards the purchase of smart electronic products, be it smartphones, smart televisions, or smart appliances – a trend that accelerated during the pandemic with premiumisation and longer time spent at home.

As per data by market tracker Counterpoint Research, the share of smartphones in total mobile phone sales increased from 59% in 2019 to 72% in 2022, while that of smart televisions from 52% to a whopping 90% in the same period.

Even for smart appliances like smart air conditioners, smart water purifiers and smart washing machines – which can connect to the internet and be controlled through smartphone apps – purchases have gone up in the same period when overall premium products outsold the mass range. The share of smart appliances has doubled in total sales compared to pre-pandemic days, as per industry estimates.

“The price difference between a smart product and a regular product is just ₹500-1,000 now, compared to ₹3,000-4,000 pre-pandemic, which is driving the adoption,” said Haier India president Satish NS. “Consumers also feel proud to own a smart product apart from the convenience of operating it from anywhere,” he said.

Counterpoint’s senior research analyst Shilpi Jain said the adoption of smartphones and smart televisions accelerated during the pandemic with in-home work, education, and consumption of entertainment. “Also, the Chinese brands in the last few years have made these products affordable. Consumers have always preferred such products with competitive pricing driving sales,” she said. Industry executives said the affordability of internet packs, wider availability of high-speed internet and the launch of 5G services will further drive the adoption of smart electronic products. Companies have also started trimming their non-smart portfolio where adoption is high such as televisions, air-conditioners, and water purifiers.

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