Smartphone sales in India hit zero in April

The extended lockdown in India has resulted in zero shipments for the smartphone players in India in the month of April as factories are shut and it will take two-four weeks time for the manufacturing units to resume normal operations once lockdown is relaxed. The month of March saw a steep annual decline in smartphone shipments, at -19 percent, due to COVID-19 nationwide lockdown that settled in from March 24.

Since then, factories are closed, retail shops are shut and online sellers are busy delivering groceries and other essential items. Result: April has seen almost zero sales. “We see zero activity on smartphone shipments part in April and lockdown now entering May amid uncertainties, the Q2 2020 is going to be real challenging for the smartphone makers in the country,” Tarun Pathak, Associate Director, Counterpoint Research, told IANS.

“We have been hearing some absolute essential sales happened behind the scenes during the lockdown but yes, those will be in hundreds as against potential 11-12 million smartphone sales which happen in a normal month,” Pathak added.

All smartphone brands – from Samsung to Xiaomi to Realme – suspended manufacturing/ assembling at their respective plants in the country almost from March 20 onwards. At Realme, there has been a complete suspension on sales and manufacturing since the first 21-day lockdown was announced.

“As per the government directives, our Greater Noida facility in Uttar Pradesh suspended operations from March 21, along with sales coming to a halt. We also postponed our Narzo series launch event and a few Artificial Intelligence of Things (AIOT) products that were scheduled for April,” Madhav Sheth, Vice President, Realme and Chief Executive Officer, Realme India, told IANS.

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Meanwhile, the lockdown has been extended by 14 days until May 17. The Government of India issued new guidelines to regulate different services in this period. But this will be based on red (hotspot), green and orange zones limitations. Under the new guidelines, a limited number of activities will open but most other things will remain prohibited throughout the country, irrespective of the zone.

Written with agency inputs

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