Tuesday, March 17, 2009

RIM bullish on India market

RIM has announced plans for selling *unlocked* BlackBerrys in India [ET ]. Redington has been drafted to play the local distribution support to work in tandem with telcos to push the niche smartphones to the *consumer* market. In the last post I highlighted the trend of smartphone sales picking up in India. BlackBerry has drafted a strategy specifically targeting the Indian market involving development of localized consumer-centric mobile applications and even considers launching an India-specific smartphone targeted at the consumer market. BlackBerry has had a good market in India in the enterprise segment with virtually every company rolling rolling out their push-email services on BlackBerry.

Around the same time comes the news of Motorola closing down its sales office in India [ET ]. Notwithstanding Motorola's recent troubles, this tells a tale of the changing market. The lower end of the market entices with volume, but the burgeoning vendors in this segment make it very unattractive in terms of margins. After a lull, the grey market is flourishing with lot of cheap handsets from China and elsewhere and they are taking the game out of the major vendors. Now the space in the higher end smartphone market is getting expanded and vendors should take cues from the policy makers and market to reap the dividends from momentous things such as 3G rollout.

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