4G Smartphones now contribute to 42% of total smartphone shipments even though telcos only recently started 4G operations

According to the latest research from Counterpoint’s Market Monitor program for Q1 2018 (Jan-March), the Bangladesh Smartphone Market declined 18% Y-o-Y and grew 3% sequentially. Chinese brands continue to grow in Bangladesh and now capture 38% of the smartphone segment, growing 25% YoY.

Bangladesh’s Smartphone Market declined 18% YoY as consumers decided to postpone their device purchases in anticipation of value for money 4G smartphone offerings in the coming quarters. 4G network rollouts started during Q1 2018 by leading telcos such as Grameenphone, Robi Axiata, and Banglalink. As network coverage expands over a period of time, the demand for 4G smartphones will pick-up in the coming quarters. According to our estimates, the overall smartphone market in Bangladesh will grow 16% YoY in CY 2018.

Even with the onslaught of Chinese brands with affordable offering in the sub $100 segment, local brand Symphony continues to lead the market with its value-for-money offerings. Walton, another local brand, grew 74% YoY as it expanded its presence in rural Bangladesh. iTel was the fastest growing smartphone brand (+564%) as it captured the third spot in the smartphone segment with its aggressive channel strategies. Going forward, expect strong competition among the top five brands

OEMs will have to consider investing in local assembly. With the recent hike in import duties, some OEMs have already started assembling locally and this can give them an edge over other brands in terms of pricing. Walton has already started local assembly and other leading brands such as Transsion, Symphony, Lava and Samsung have outlined plans to start assembling soon.

Exhibit 1: Bangladesh Smartphone Shipments

Bangladesh Smartphonne Shipment Market Share %

Source: Counterpoint Research Market Monitor Q1 2018 Report


Smartphone Market Summary: 

  • Bangladesh smartphone shipments declined 18% YoY and grew 3% sequentially.
  • Smartphone shipments contributed to 21% of the total mobile phone shipments, signalling a slow but steady adoption of smartphones.
  • Symphony remained the leading smartphone brand in Bangladesh with 21% market share.
  • Walton was the only other Bangladesh brand featured among the top five smartphone brands with 15% market share surpassing Samsung. Walton smartphone shipments grew by 74% YoY, with its local manufacturing contributing to 25% of its smartphone shipments in Q1 2018.
  • iTel, became the fastest smartphone brand growing +564% YoY in Q1 2018 capturing 10% market share during the quarter. Aggressive promotions along with its low-cost entry level smartphones offerings were the reasons for its success. It captured the third spot by surpassing both Samsung and Huawei in Q1 2018. iTel’s S11 was the popular model during this quarter.
  • Samsung smartphone shipments declined 46% YoY with 10% market share. However, Samsung is leading the 4G smartphone segment with 21% market share due to its “J series” models, which alone contributes to 17% of the total 4G smartphone shipments in Q1 2018.
  • Huaweiclinched the fifth spot in the smartphone segment with 8% market share during the quarter. Huawei’s Y series (Y3) was the popular 4G model. Huawei contributed to 20% of the total 4G smartphone shipments in Bangladesh during Q1 2018
  • Grameenphone, Robi Axiata and Banglalink launched 4G services at the end of February. However, most users are still waiting for nationwide full deployment of 4G networks which has extended the smartphone replacement cycle in the country.

Exhibit 2: Bangladesh Smartphone Shipment by Broad Category Q1 2018


Bangladesh Smartphone Shipment by Broad Category Q1 2018

Source: Counterpoint Research Market Monitor Q1 2018 Report

The comprehensive and in-depth Q1 2018 Bangladesh Market Monitor is available for subscribing clients. Please feel free to reach out to us at press(at) for further questions regarding our in-depth latest research, insights or press enquiries.

The Market Monitor research is based on sell-in (shipments) estimates based on vendor’s IR results, vendor polling triangulated with sell-through (sales), supply chain checks and secondary research.


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