Realme India CEO says India will see 2G, 4G and 5G coexist as users have different needs | Tech Rasta

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Chinese smartphone maker Realme has achieved exponential growth in the Indian mobile phone market in just four years of its operation. In Q2 2022, it will become the second largest smartphone brand in the country

Chinese smartphone maker Realme has achieved exponential growth in the Indian mobile phone market in just four years of its operation. In Q2 2022, it will become the second largest smartphone brand in the country

Oppo’s former sub-brand believes the rollout of 5G could bring more innovation in the smartphone market.in an exclusive interview Hinduism, Realme India CEO Madhav Sheth talks about foldable phones, censorship, jobs and investments. An edited excerpt follows:

Realme has been on a growth trajectory despite the overall decline in shipments from other players in the Indian market. What do you think of this position despite the fierce competition in the market?

Xie Si: I believe one of the biggest factors driving Realme’s growth, not just over the past few months, but in general, is that we’ve been listening to our customers and building on user experience. We curate and launch products based on their changing needs and ensure they get the best features at the right price. Our focus has always been to provide our clients with the latest technology and stylish designs, and this approach has been well received by them. We reach out to our user community through various channels and take their feedback very seriously.

We are also able to build strong connections with our customers through an omnichannel approach. I believe having the right mix of online and retail presence plays an important role in attracting your customers and at Realme we have found that balance. We have built strong partnerships with our e-commerce partners from the start and have established a sufficient number of retail stores across the country. Over the next few months, we will continue to improve our services and strive to forge new partnerships with more e-commerce partners.

What works for us is our robust after sales service and remediation system. We have a strong network of service centers across the country and will continue to expand this network to further enhance the user experience.

Everyone’s talking about 5G and 5G-enabled phones are the next big thing. Realme already has a 5G smartphone portfolio, but what will change after the official launch of services for brands like Realme and its suppliers and buyers?

Xie Si: We’ve always been on the cutting edge of technology and we’re very excited to launch 5G services. The conversation around 5G started in 2019-2020 and we were the first brand to launch a 5G smartphone in India. Since then, our product portfolio has grown to the point where 50% of our product portfolio includes 5G-enabled devices. We have 5 million users in India already using our 5G-enabled smartphones, and once the service rolls out, there will be plenty of opportunities. 5G will help drive greater use of smart technologies such as the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence and virtual reality, which in turn will revolutionize the development of new products and services available to customers.

With the official launch of 5G services, an entire ecosystem will be formed, which will usher in the era of smart home and office and connected transportation, which will change the way we live, work and travel. For users, 5G brings a lot of convenience – for example, storage will definitely be migrated to the cloud, and the gaming community will be completely different from now.

With the rollout of 5G, do you think 4G phones will become obsolete here and look outside India for new markets where your main export is?

Xie Si: There is no doubt that 5G is the next big thing in the communications industry, but I believe India is a market where 2G, 4G and 5G can co-exist because users have different needs. We want to meet the needs of a wide range of customers, which is why Realme will continue to bring 4G and 5G smartphones to India in the coming months. We want to democratize 5G in India and want to reach the masses across the country, that’s why we’re launching more and more affordable 5G smartphones, but we realize that even with 5G, there is still a significant portion of users who are still looking for 4G Devices have gained popularity, so we will continue to innovate and bring new products to our consumers, and I am sure all of our smartphones will be as popular as they have been in the past.

At this time, it’s a good idea to limit or cap smartphone sales by price, doesn’t it violate the principles of fair and healthy competition?

Xie Si: I don’t want to comment on whether this idea violates the principles of fair and healthy competition, but in the past few days, the authorities have clarified that they are not considering any such move or considering the idea. They have some expectations of the brand and Realme is already meeting these expectations and is committed to further improving its contribution to the economy. Over the past four years, we have built several strong partnerships with OEMs to manufacture in India and all Realme smartphones are 100% made in India. We also bring a large part of our supply chain to India, where 60-70% of the components are sourced locally. Another issue is the increase in domestic exports from India, we have been exporting to several South Asian countries since 2021 and are expanding our export capacity. Additionally, our entire dealer network is sourced from India.

As hybrid work continues, tablets are becoming your new favorite in India. Did you notice something missing in this section?

Xie Si: We entered the tablet space in 2021 with three tablets and the market response was very good. We are always working hard to understand consumers’ needs and introduce new products that meet their everyday needs. With the possibility of a 5G network rollout in the coming months, we considered a 5G-enabled 5G tablet, hence the introduction of the Realme Pad X, the industry’s first 5G tablet in the premium mid-range segment. It supports 6nm Snapdragon 695 processor, which is bound to bring unparalleled experience to users. We will continue to expand this category further as we see opportunities.

Smartphone players are now experimenting with foldable phones, and Realme has yet to comment on it, despite its sister company Oppo owning the technology. Will Realme not try but focus on its strong areas?

Xie Si: Realme consistently invests in R&D combined with market-specific insights to create compelling products that are in sync with customer needs across the entire demographic, including India. The concept of foldable phones is exciting, and we’re working on the back end to get the best possible product that meets consumers’ everyday needs. Right now, our focus is on delivering fast charging and advanced camera quality. In the long run, we will continue to bring products that meet the daily needs of consumers.

In recent times, there has been an unspoken scrutiny of Chinese brands. Won’t it disrupt the company’s investment, recruiting, and promotion plans?

Xie Si: Realme was founded in India about four years ago, and we’ve been moving forward ever since. I think compliance with the laws of the land is crucial and Realme 100% complies. In the past, we have invested heavily in India to expand our local manufacturing capabilities and have successfully achieved 100% local manufacturing of our smartphones, smart TVs, Realme Buds Wireless, Realme Watch 2 Pro and Realme 4K Smart TV Google Stick. We are also committed to manufacturing our flagship TWS, Realme Buds Air 3 100% in India.

Our local manufacturing program has also created ample employment opportunities for young Indians, making Realme a family of 10,000 employees, and by the end of this year, we aim to reach 13,000 employees. Our product launch program is also running as planned, and we are constantly working to improve our ability to work.

What is the roadmap for Realme phones to roll out Android 13?

Xie Si: We provide our users with regular updates of required software etc. via OTA. We’ll continue to share regular updates to meet user requests and post Android 13 to our user base in a timely manner.

Didn’t Realme become the Xiaomi of BBK Electronics in just 4 years, with Narzo, smart TV, TWS, wearable devices and other IoT products?

Xie Si: As a consumer-focused brand, we remain committed to providing our users with best-in-class technology in every field. Over the past four years, Realme has expanded into multiple categories to meet the regular needs of our consumers. In 2022, we start building our AIoT portfolio or TechLife ecosystem with the Realme Band and expand with multiple hearables, wearables and smart TVs. Last year, we also entered the laptop and tablet market, and we did well. We intend to add more affordable audio and wearable products, while exploring additional health assessment capabilities and standalone connectivity. Realme will continue to provide value-for-money high-tech audio and consumer electronics that are ergonomically engineered with advanced features, seamless design and performance that exceed all consumer expectations.

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