Chinese smartphone upstart Realme has seemed to push into worldwide markets with its flagship telephones. But it’s taking part in within the mid-priced section of the market the place it faces intense competitors from rivals like Xiaomi.
BARCELONA, Spain — Chinese smartphone maker Realme needs stand out in a crowded house of mid-tier units. So on Tuesday, it launched a smartphone it claims may be absolutely charged in 9 minutes and 30 seconds.
The firm took the wraps off of its GT3 smartphone on the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, the most important cellular commerce present on this planet. It’s seeking to develop its enterprise exterior of China, and joins a flurry of Chinese distributors seeking to goal abroad markets.
The GT3 begins at $649, placing it in an especially aggressive section the place Realme will compete with Chinese rivals like Xiaomi and Oppo, which provide low-cost units with excessive specs.
“Realme is chasing the low margin segment of the market by offering extremely competitively priced products aimed at value seekers,” Ben Wood, chief of analysis at CCS Insight, instructed CNBC by way of e mail.
“However, this is an extremely difficult part of the market to play in. Low single digit margins can evaporate if the dollar moves quickly, component prices rise or shipping cost soar – all headwinds Realme has had to face.”
In a bid to increase abroad, the corporate launched its flagship telephone the GT2 and GT2 Pro in Europe final yr. But the timing has been powerful, with the worldwide smartphone market in 2022 struggling its worst yr since 2013 by way of shipments.
Sky Li, the CEO of Realme, instructed CNBC final yr that the corporate is seeking to promote 85 million telephones globally in 2022. The firm has not launched up to date numbers. Strategy Analytics, a market analysis agency, estimates the corporate shipped 52 million smartphones, a 20% year-on-year decline. Shipment numbers point out the variety of units Realme sends to retailers to promote and doesn’t equal gross sales, however it is a sign of demand for the corporate’s telephones.
Realme’s shipments in Europe, the important thing area it’s focusing on for worldwide enlargement, dropped 44% yr on yr within the fourth quarter of 2022, in accordance with Counterpoint Research. Its market share in Europe fell to 4% from 6% in the identical interval the yr earlier than.
“Realme’s biggest challenges across Europe and the U.S. in 2023 include a lack of retail presence at powerful operators like Vodafone” and a “brand perception that is less prestigious than Apple or Samsung,” Neil Mawston, govt director at Strategy Analytics, instructed CNBC by way of e mail.