Smartphone shipments in India expanded 20 per cent in India from a year ago, with LTE device shipments soaring 2,400 per cent, according to Counterpoint.

Tarun Pathak, Counterpoint senior analyst, said the market is being fuelled by high demand for LTE models and phablets. LTE shipments, which accounted for a third of smartphone shipments in Q3, more than doubled from the previous quarter. Half of shipments were phablets.

The country’s “Made In India” drive has pushed five major handset makers to start domestic assembly during the quarter. These firms are looking to expand their capacity in coming years not only for domestic consumption but also to export beyond the domestic markets, Pathak said.

One in four mobile phones sold during the quarter was made in India.

Samsung maintained its top position with a 23.2 per cent share (see chart, click to enlarge) of the smartphone market. Micromax was second with a 17.7 per cent share (up 1 point from Q2), followed by Intex (11.7 per cent), Lenova (9.8 per cent) and Lava (6.6 per cent). The latter three all gained 1-2 points in their shares.

Samsung was also the leader in overall handset shipments, boosting its market share from 18.7 per cent in Q2 to 19 per cent in Q3. Micromax, which lost share, was number 2 with a 13.8 per cent share. Intex was third (11.3 per cent), Lava was fourth (9.9 per cent) and Microsoft was fifth (6.8 per cent – down from 8.1 per cent in Q2).

Counterpoint said Micromax is facing strong competition in the $50-$100 segment from Intex, Lava and others.

China’s once fast rising Xiaomi saw its first quarter-on-quarter decline in India, with shipments down 46 per cent form Q2 due to fierce competition in the sub-$100 segment.

Apple accounted for just 1 per cent of smartphone shipments (1.7 million) by volume but 9 per cent by value.

The research firms said Panasonic, Vivo and Oppo grew significantly during the quarter.