For some time now, Infinix smartphones seem to be dominating the smartphone market in Ghana. Most handheld devices used, especially by the youth, are of this brand. This piece investigates if indeed Infinix has become the market leader and the possible reasons for its market takeover.
Infinix is a mobile phone maker based in Hong Kong which designs its devices in France and Korea but manufactures them in China. The company, which was established in 2009, boasts of presence in 60 countries, which includes 10 in Africa (Mulupi, 2016). Infinix is not only popular in Ghana; it has a huge presence in other African countries including Kenya and Nigeria. The product lines of Infinix include Zero, Note, Hot and Hot S.
To know whether Infinix has emerged as the market leader, a sales attendant at the Madina Branch of Franco Trading Enterprise, a mobile phone and accessories retail company, was consulted. The attendant gave her name as Jacqueline. When she was asked the most patronized device brand in the shop, she said it was Infinix. When asked why she thought consumers were switching to this particular smartphone, she said: “Infinix phones are cheaper than most of the other brands of the same ability like say Samsung. It also has a very good battery. Personally, I was using a Samsung phone but I have now changed to Infinix because I was having problems with my Samsung battery; the battery died too fast and sometimes it became so hot. I had to take it out of the phone for it to cool. But with Infinix, though the battery is inbuilt, I don’t encounter these problems.” Some of the Infinix phones on display at Franco Trading Enterprise were the Hot Pro, Zero 4, Zero 3 and Hot 4 lite. Hot 4 lite sells at GHS 360.
In a blog post by Kevin Walsh of GFK SE, a leading market research organization based in Germany, titled Key Trends in the Global Smartphone Market, the writer explains that the smartphone market has become saturated in developed countries, and the future of sales lies in the Middle East, Africa and the Asia-Pacific region. This observation is important in looking at the proliferation of smartphones on the Ghanaian market.
In an article by Dinfin Mulupi about smartphones in Africa, the writer shares this: Global technology consulting firm International Data Corporation (IDC) says growth in Africa’s smartphone market is largely being driven by the emergence of Android-powered, low-priced devices. In the first quarter of 2015, the IDC found half of all smartphones shipped across Africa were priced below $100, while almost 75% cost less than $200. “This price bracket seems to be the sweet point for most vendors launching in the region, as well as for established vendors looking to increase their shares by targeting the lower end of the market,” Nabila Popal, a research manager at the IDC, said last year.
The paragraph above is instructive and confirms the reason why Infinix phone sales have surged; the low price has increased quantity demanded. However, the low price does not explain why Infinix has overtaken other smartphones, which are affordable, like Alcatel and Tecno.
A phone repairer by name Adu Gyamfi at Victor Phones, situated at Madina Zongo Junction, explained: “Infinix brings out new versions of their devices almost every quarter. Tecno, for instance, takes a long time before it launches new products. Also, there are clones of the Infinix phones which are difficult to differentiate from the original; those ones are very cheap. The most recent Samsung phone, Galaxy s7s, is sold at about GHS 2,300. Meanwhile, Infinix’s Hot 4 is GHS850, but you can get the clone at, give or take, GHS 450.”
It appears Infinix has come to stay. As a new entrant into the market, its growth has been remarkable. It is important that other mobile phone brands learn from their example in order to better position themselves in the market place.
WRITER– Kwak Gyamfi- threesixtyGh writer/contributor.
“Infinix launches the Zero 4 in Ghana” http://www.ghanaweb.com/GhanaHomePage/business/Infinix-Ghana-launches-the-Zero-4-in-Ghana-490879
“Infinix phones” http://gadgets.ndtv.com/mobiles/infinix-phones
Mulupin, D. (2016, January 21). Smartphone maker Infinix focuses on online sales in Africa. Retrieved January 26, 2017, from http://www.howwemadeitinafrica.com/smartphone-maker-infinix-focuses-on-online-sales-in-africa/
“Types of Infinix phones” http://infinixmobility.com/
Walsh, K. (2015). Key trends in the global smartphone market: Part 2. Retrieved January 26, 2017, from https://blog.gfk.com/2015/07/key-trends-in-the-global-smartphone-market-part-2/