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It’s official, ‘Selfie lovers’ top market for smartphone makers, two big launches in one day

Nazia Bijal | Nov 2, 2017, 09.27 PM IST
There have been numerous smartphone launches designed for the selfie frenzied youth and it looks like the trend is only growing stronger. Oppo and Xiaomi both today launched their selfie focused smartphones among much fanfare in India. The stage was set in New Delhi for Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi to launch a whole new series called Redmi Y for selfie-focused smartphones. The company launched two new phones as part of the series, RedmiY1 and RedmiY1 Lite both priced under Rs. 10000. Xiaomi India Head Manu Kumar Jain said that the Y stands for 'You' as in the selfi-taking youth of today. In Mumbai, Chinese counterpart Oppo too had a big launch for its "Selfie Expert" OppoF5 smartphone. The phone comes packed with 20 megapixel front camera, 18:9 'Full Screen' display and also an AI-powered beautification features. While both phones have a similar marketing angle, the phone will not be competing with one another, atleast in terms of pricing. Xiaomi's RedmiY1 Lite is priced at Rs. 6999 whereas starting price for Oppo's F5 phones is Rs. 19,990. For both the companies, these were big launches. Both companies also announced brand ambassadors to capture the attention of selfie loving smartphone users. Oppo roped in Bollywood actor Siddharth Malhotra and Xiaomi, in what is the first celebrity promoter for the company, got actress Katrina Kaif to be the face of the newly launched Redmi Y series. Xiaomi believes that Katrina's personality will appeal to the selfie taking youth of today. Both companies have big plans on not just promoting but making the phones available through different channels across the country. Oppo's new phone will be exclusively available online on Flipkart but the brand has plans to make the new phone available across the country via offline stores. Xiaomi too has plans to make the selfie focused smartphones a major part of their offline stores. Xiaomi has had a pretty good year in India in terms of sales of its recent smartphones. And it has high hopes from the newly launched Redmi Y series. Even though Xiaomi was known as an online only brand at the time when it entered India but now the company has ramped up its offline presence massively, apart from being present at all major multi-brand stores, Xiaomi has also launched the company's own stand alone stores called Mi homes in different parts of the country. So far Xiaomi has opened nine Mi Homes and it has plans to set up 100 Mi stores in two years. Manu Kumar Jain said that this year offline sales have been extremely lucrative for the company and he expects that 30 per cent of the company's sales in India will come through offline stores by this year-end. It is clear that for smartphone makers, selfie taking youth are a perfect consumer. Not only low or medium budget smartphone brands but even the premium smartphone brands like iPhone, Google have stressed on how great their selfie cameras are - making sure they address a major target group.
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