Indian handset production may touch 30 mn in 07: ICA

By SiliconIndia   |   Tuesday, 30 January 2007, 06:00 Hrs
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Hyderabad: The information revolution in India seems to be riding on the piggyback of the mobile handset. According to fresh estimates, the country could potentially produce about 30 million handsets this year itself as against initial estimates of this target by 2009. This will be part of the 85-90 million handsets that are expected to be added this year, reported the Business Line.

Pankaj Mohindroo, President of India Cellular Association (ICA) said that production has begun in several manufacturing units in the country, which include LG, Nokia, Flextronics and Samsung. Motorola is set to join soon.

On his visit to Hyderabad to launch an outlet for i-Mate, Mohindroo, also the Chairman of i-Mate, said: "India has reached an inflection point and has emerged as the fastest growing cellular market in the world. The best part is it continues to be a largely untapped market promising huge potential for growth."

The handset scenarios has undergone a sea-change in the last two years, with around 90 percent of the handsets being purchased with legally now; an exact reversal of yesteryear when about 85-90 per cent of handsets were procured from the grey market. This makes the potential of achieving this 30-million production mark quite real and achievable.

About 68 million handsets were added last year. “We expect 2007 to register similar growth. To this, we need to factor the replacement market, which is about 15-18 per cent. Over 75 per cent of the market is accounted by sub Rs 7,500 handsets,” he said, while adding that the category of business phones, now estimated at about 0.5 per cent of the total market, is poised for growth, driven by increased adoption in enterprises to empower their field force.

He was of the view that since business phones provide the advantage of accessing e-mail and other computing applications, and also conferencing on the go, many enterprises are purchasing these handsets to empower their employees.

Mohindroo added of i-Mate plans, “We currently offer our business phones for GSM networks, but we are considering the prospect of rolling out CDMA phones too”.

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