Budget 5G Smartphone Market To Get Competitive In 2023 — Here’s How Poco Plans To Edge Past Rea

India is set to create a market of 31 million 5G users by the end of this year, according to a recent report by Swedish networking and telecommunications services company Ericsson and the next warzone for handset makers is going to be the budget smartphones from Poco, Xiaomi, Realme and Oppo with 5G technology in the Rs 10,000-Rs 15,000 price segment as the country’s telecom operators slowly roll out 5G services across all the cities.

Handset maker Poco told ABP Live that India will remain a priority market for the company and is arming itself with a new strategy and budget 5G models, as it aims to disrupt the budget 5G smartphone segment in the country.

“In future, there will be budget launches in the Poco C-series and Poco M-series lineup and 5G will play an instrumental role in our overall product strategy. We are also exploring partnerships with Indian telecom service providers to bring low-cost 5G smartphones contributing to 5G adoption in the country,” Himanshu Tandon, Country Head, Poco India, told ABP Live in an exclusive interview.

“However, I believe it will still take a few quarters to bring a complete 5G-ready device in the budget segment as there is a 5G tax that has to be paid for chipsets, entailing a few compromises in products like the omission of AMOLED display, fast charging technology, among others. However, we ensure empowering consumers with equitable innovation and performance in a product alongside 5G support,” Tandon explained.

To recall, Poco, which was part of handset major Xiaomi became an independent company in January 2020 and has been operating as a separate entity since then. Unlike Xiaomi, Poco’s portfolio is not confusing for buyers and it does not launch dozens of smartphone models every year, unlike most Android smartphone makers.

Poco India to foray into ecosystem products in 2023

Poco India’s top boss Tandon also highlighted that India will remain a priority market for the company from a global vantage with more globally integrated launches and product developments. Poco India intends to continue bringing devices at aggressive pricing while maintaining the price-to-performance ratio in the country.

“Another priority area for us in 2023 will be to foray into the non-smartphone category and our team has been working towards cracking a differentiator for ecosystem products. We want to spend significant time understanding the need gap and bring devices that would truly redefine users’ experience. We are exploring several IoT and other categories with the price-to-performance ratio on offer, fine-tuned for the market here,” Tandon explained.

Poco’s offline push in 2023

In a bid to scale up business in the country next year, the handset maker also has plans to explore other channels as well as e-commerce channels to deliver a large volume of products and expand its consumer base.

According to Tandon, all Poco products are manufactured in India and currently, the company has 7-10 SMT lines in the country operational and capable of manufacturing between 20,000-22,000 units on a daily basis at 100 per cent capacity, with a monthly production capacity ranging between 450,000-500,000.

What sets Poco apart from rival brands

Unlike most smartphone makers, Poco is not crowding the smartphone market with dozens of launches every year. The handset maker is focused on bringing the “best experience to our users” and maintaining the price-to-performance ratio.

When asked why Poco follows this strategy, Tandon replied: “All brands in the industry have a different approach for the same such as target audience, product strategy, vision, among others. While there are limited innovations with respect to advancements in various departments by brands, Poco has the liberty of making independent decisions.”