The latest move by OnePlus to shift its focus on affordable smartphones is a result of the pandemic which is forcing customers to hold back on discretionary purchases, especially in India, analysts said. They added changed strategy could be seen in the light of evolving market condition, especially mid-premium segment driving handset volumes.
In a recent interview with ET, OnePlus India’s new Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer Navnit Nakra said that the objective behind the new strategy is to ‘share technology with more users.’
“Our strategy is to expand to a much wider user base. There will be a concrete plan. In that sense, we are looking at new product lines…accessible and diversified product lines that will give premium experience,” he said, adding that the aim is to diversify across price segments.
Another Chinese handset brand Xiaomi had also said that it will revisit its product portfolio for India to accommodate consumer buying pattern. “The mid-segment for smartphone will even further increase. Mid-premium and premium segments are likely to slow down as people will now look for buying slightly affordable phones. We definitely expect the curve to change slightly,” Manu Jain, Xiaomi India head had told ET.
“In the aftermath of a pandemic, when consumers will potentially hold back on discretionary purchases, it is prudent for OnePlus to follow Apple’s strategy and offer affordable smartphones,” Prabhu Ram, Head-Industry Intelligence Group, CMR said.
Ram added that the changed strategy speaks to the evolving market conditions. “The move will entice Android buyers seeking to shift to a ‘premium’ Android brand.”