Flagship smartphones have gained significant popularity over the past few years. Companies are increasingly introducing high-end mobile phones and largely focus on the sales & marketing of these phones to garner increased consumer traction. Some of the popular product launch in 2017 include the Samsung Galaxy S8, LG G6, HTC U11, OnePlus 5, Motorola Moto Z2 Force, Apple iPhone X, and Mi6. The rapidly growing working population is increasingly inclined towards luxury products such as flagship smartphones and are growingly tech savvy, in turn fueling market growth.
Growing emphasis on the internet penetration to boost the economic growth is expected to drive the demand of the flagship smartphone
Proliferation of IoT and increased demand of connectivity in every aspect, that include home automation, security, automotive, work, factory has led significant change in the lifestyle of the middle income group. Moreover, increased emphasis on the development of high speed internet technology such as 4G and 5G technologies is expected to drive the demand of advanced mobile phone having features such as high processing capability, versatility, and durability. In addition, increased emphasis on the introduction cutting edge features such as improved water resistance, high resolution cameras, biometric identification, and gesture control among others will present strong growth prospects for flagship smartphones market over the forecast period.
Flagship Smartphone Market Taxonomy
On the basis of distribution channel, the global flagship smartphone market is classified into:
- Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM)
- Retail stores
- Multi-brand stores
- Single brand stores
On the basis of operating systems, the global flagship smartphone market is classified into:
- RIM Blackberry
- Others (Sailfish, Tizen & Ubuntu)
On the basis of memory storage type, the global smartphone market is classified into:
- Inbuilt storage
- 8 GB and less
- 16 GB
- 32 GB
- 64 GB and above
- Expandable storage
On the basis of regions, the global flagship smartphone market is classified into:
- North America
- Asia Pacific
- Latin America
- Middle East
Multi-channel retailing has added to the ease of availability of flagship smartphones to the customers across the globe
Growth of multiple retail channels include single brand, multi-brand stores, and e-commerce across different regional segments have increased consumer access to the newly launched smart gadgets. Moreover, growth of ecommerce business to cater the international consumer base. In recent past, major smartphone manufacturers have focused on teaming up with e-tailers, serving as exclusive sales partners for their flagship devices. Players such as Xiaomi, Motorola, and OnePlus have reaped rich dividends from such partnerships in the recent past.
Android OS is expected to hold the largest flagship smartphone market share over the forecast period
Android provide world-class platform to create applications and games for users that can be virtually accessed from anywhere across the globe. This is primarily owing to its open accessibility and all major manufacturers, with the exception of Apple opting for this operating system for their flagship phones. Among the storage types, expandable memory handsets are expected to gain edge over the internal memory limitation. This is owing to the improvement in multi-aspects of the smartphones, which include motion sensing, graphic resolutions, and increasing consumers’ requirement for information storage. However, factors such as fast processing, easy data accessibility, and protection from viruses that can be transmitted through external device, are expected to drive the growth of the flagship smartphone market. In addition, few major companies will continue to provide inbuilt storage spaces to the consumers.
Global Flagship Smartphone Market: Key Players
Chief industry participants in the global flagship smartphone market include Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., Apple Inc., Oppo, OnePlus and Mobitech Creations, Xiaomi, Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd., LG Electronics Inc., Lenovo Group Limited, ZTE Corporation, TCL Communication Technology Holdings Limited, and Vivo Communication Technology Co. Ltd. Asia Pacific is expected to remain the prominent focus of the players, owing to the largest middle income group and the increasing penetration of mobile phones mainly in China, India, and ASEAN countries.
Global Flagship Smartphone Market: Key Developments
- In October 2019, Panasonic Corporation, Japanese multinational electronics corporation, announced a launch of its two AI infused flagship smartphones, the Eluga X1 and X1 Pro.
- In September 2019, Apple Inc., launched its new flagship iPhones - iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max. The iPhone 11 comes with a 6.1-inch retina display with the brand new Apple A13 Bionic chipset.
- In September 2019, Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd. is a Chinese multinational technology company, announced a launch of its new flagship smartphones - "Mate 30" and "Mate 30 Pro" in Munich. The premium phone will operate on an open-source version of Google’s android operating system.
- In September 2019, Samsung, South Korean multinational conglomerate, announced a launch of its newest premium Galaxy A-series smartphone in Korea. The Galaxy A90 is the first high-end flagship smartphone under the Galaxy A-series to feature a Snapdragon 855 SoC.
- In August 2019, ZTE Corporation, Chinese multinational telecommunications equipment and Systems Company, announced the launch of the new Axon 10 Pro in the U.S., bringing the latest, next-generation addition to ZTE’s flagship Axon portfolio to U.S. consumers.