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Datawind tops tablet market in India; Micromax, Apple follow

Datawind leads the market, with Micromax and Apple coming in at #2 and #3 respectively; Top 5 vendors make up nearly 59% of Tablet shipments. Indian consumer has no bias against domestic brands; only Apple amongst international brands figures in Top 3 vendors during the quarter

computing-tablets-1_505_033012101201_040913061621Bangalore: According to latest data from market research firm Cyber Media Research, Datawind, maker of the Indian government’s Rs 2,500 Aakash tablet, emerged as a market leader in India’s tablet market during the first quarter of 2013.

CyberMedia Research estimates that shipments of tablet devices during the first quarter of 2013 jumped 159 percent year-on-year to account for 905,000 units. That’s actually a drop of 18 percent from the final quarter of 2012, the period was peak time due to Christmas and the end of the year, so a direct comparison is a little off.

Image Courtesy: CMR India
Image Courtesy: CMR India

The latest report from CyberMedia found that an enormous 53 domestic and international companies distributed tablets across India — demonstrating the surge, particularly in affordable devices — however just nine firms “shipped in significant volumes of more than 20,000 units during the period”.

Image Courtesy: CMR India

“The continued long-term growth in shipments of tablets in the India market further points to the fact that a large proportion of first time users of computers in emerging markets like India are getting to experience computing through this highly portable, converged form factor,” said Faisal Kawoosa, analyst at Cyber Media. He added the fall in tablet sales is “not substantial” and it could be attributed to seasonality.

According to Mr. Kawoosa, Indians don’t have any bias against brands. He adds, “Another bright spot, particularly for domestic vendors is that the Indian consumer has shown no particular bias against local Tablet brands as was presumed all along. Local brands did well during 1Q 2013, and while some may argue that these brands are not purely local, but the reality is that in today’s globalised economy, it does not make business sense to try and completely produce a product out of a single country or region. There are many advantages to be gained by tapping into the diversified global ESDM supply chain to produce the ‘best’ product for the target customer at the optimal price point,”