The battle of the box is reminiscent of the battle of phones, but the number of players is perhaps more and the price war more intense in India’s television market. There are about 70 TV brands in India now, double the number just two years back. Prices on average have already crashed by 40%. And since more manufacturers are likely to join the fray, price competition may get more intense.
Xiaomi, Thomson, and TCL have already taken the price war to market leaders Samsung, LG and Sony. With more online exclusive deals for consumers and more brands focused on getting a market share of the larger screen — 50 to 55 inches — segment, more price drops are expected at the high end.
Samsung, LG, and Sony control almost 70% of the Indian TV market. Market leader Samsung last month dropped TV prices sharply after reducing prices for some older models in June. Panasonic too dropped prices on a few models above 40 inches earlier this month.
Some smaller brands are having to adjust to higher costs thanks to rupee depreciation. Industry executives said bigger brands like Samsung and LG can hold on to lower prices. This will also help them bridge the price gap with online brands, which are now 30-40% cheaper to them.
Online focused TV maker Vu Technologies’ CEO Devita Saraf said, “The television market in India, especially in the Rs 25,000 plus segment, is not as commoditized as smartphones are and consumers will not compromise on the brand when buying a large screen model.”