As China reels from the coronavirus, South Korean mobile phone maker Samsung seems to be recovering some of the lost ground.
While the outbreak has forced most leading brands like Apple, Xiaomi, Oppo, Vivo, and Realme to rework their launch dates and pricing strategies, Samsung, which struggled to maintain its hold over the market last year, has taken the lead.
Data from the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) shows that the local unit of the Korean major has lined up nine new handset models for launch in early 2020. Among major brands, only Redmi (from Xiaomi) and LG have registered two models each since January 1 with the national standards body, followed by Motorola and Coolpad (one each).
With manufacturing suspended in China and supply of key components and handset models in jeopardy, Chinese firms are feeling the heat. Though many of them have set up facilities in India, they continue to depend heavily on supplies from China.
Samsung, however, is somewhat immune to supply disruptions in the neighbouring country. This is because the firm, which has been manufacturing most of its handsets locally, ramped up its capacity in 2018 by adding new lines and product categories at its Noida facility, doubling its installed capacity to 120 million units from 68 million a year.