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New Delhi: India’s smartphone shipments rose to a record 169 million in 2021, an 11% increase from the previous year, despite supply disruptions and price increases due to component shortages, according to Counterpoint Research.

The market researcher attributed replacement demand and demand for 5G smartphones, which contributed to about 17% of the overall shipments in 2021, registering a six-fold growth from the previous year. “We expect the market to continue to grow by double digits with a healthy contribution of the mid-to-high-end 5G smartphones," said analysts at the firm, adding that the market continued to offer big opportunities for multiple players to grow and co-exist.

Intense competition among phone makers, availability of cheaper 5G chipsets and declining prices of 5G devices will enable brands to push more 5G devices into the market, it noted.

In 2021, the price of entry-level 5G devices has come down by 40% in the last six months, which further led to an increase in high 5G smartphone adoption. Consumer demand remained high in the higher price tiers of upwards of 20,000 in 2021, with shipments in these price bands growing 96% on-year. “High installed base, as well as high replacement demand coupled with the increasing affordability of premium devices, led to the high growth of the premium segment," the firm added.

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