Smartphones have been a popular Diwali gifting choice and the run up to the festival has seen a gamut of launches in the category. A smartphone advertising blitz is on, with Apple, Samsung and Sony together spending at least Rs 300 crore on high-intensity publicity campaigns in October 2014, says a Counterpoint Technology Market Research report.
This segment is expected to strengthen further with the Xiaomi Redmi 1S and the Android One handsets hitting the market, all in the Rs 6,000-6,500 range. Up to 14 smartphones are slated to be launched this festive season.
Here are a pick of the brands that are going aggressive on promotions, and are turning out to be advertisers’ top picks this season:
Apple iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus
Apple created a maddening buzz online with the launch of its latest iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus in October. Pre-bookings were high though the company delayed the launch until tonight.
Google’s Android One
This Google baby introduced via handsets made by Micromax, Karbonn, Spice, Intex and Celkon was launched in September.
Since Google was ready to spend more than Rs 100 crore with its partners on advertising and marketing of this $100-phone, it has been aggressively marketing the devices ahead of the Diwali shopping season.
Samsung has announced a slew of launches, including the Galaxy Note Edge. This curved screen handset is expected to hit Indian stores ahead of the festive season.
Another model, the Galaxy Alpha, was launched with looks closely resembling the Apple flagship model from last year. The Galaxy Alpha was launched as an exclusive competitor to the iPhone 6.
Sony Xperia Z3
The Xperia Z3 is the Sony’s new flagship model, which was unveiled at the IFA 2014. The phone comes in the Sony’s iconic design language. The phone was launched in September itself, ahead of the Apple launch in October. Its younger cousin, the Z3 Compact, accompanies the handset.
Sony has been aggressively promoting the models on print and digital mediums.
Nokia Lumia 830
Microsoft has just launched the Lumia 830 alongside the Lumia 730 and Lumia 735 Smartphones. These are basically camera phones as Lumia 830 gets a 10 megapixel camera with powered by PureView technology, while the Lumia 730 and 735 are touted as the company’s first selfie phones with 5-megapixel front-facing camera.
The company has plans to launch its latest 4G-enabled Lumia 830 priced at around Rs 26,000 (before taxes) by October this year for the festive season.
HTC Desire 820
HTC has officially announced the Desire 816G, Desire 820 and Desire 820Q smartphones in India. The Desire 816G, a dual-SIM smartphone, will be available from next month for Rs 18,990. HTC hasn't revealed pricing of the Desire 820 and 820q yet, but confirmed the phone’s availability in early November.
Oppo teased the launch of its new phone earlier this month. The company posted a teaser picture on its Facebook India page in August saying this was the phone, with the picture of the old wired telephone with a dial. The dial shows the placement of ‘3’ in a wrong pace indicating this could be the Oppo N3.
“Time to turn things around in October. Stay tuned and keep guessing”, says the ad with the teaser image. The handset is expected to be a successor of the popular camera phone from the company, the N1.
This is not all. Micromax, Celkon, Lava, Xolo, Karbonn, Lenovo, Spice are also expected to launch budget handsets in market for the festive season, while Gionee, Huawei, Panasonic and Videocon are also coming up with at least one new product each this season.