New Delhi: Chinese smartphone player
is taking its premium segment smart TV offline, in an exclusive tie up with Reliance Digital across 600 stores countrywide. The move is set to spruce up competition for traditional brands like
and Panasonic that have held the larger share of the offline market in the past.
The company, which globally launched its smart televisions from India in August, claimed to have taken 42% share of the premium smart TV segment on online partner Amazon during the first few days of festive sales that began early this month, and now intends to cater to offline market which is still a large portion of retail sales in India.
“There is still about 65% of Indian population which are heavily offline based, and prefer to touch and feel a product before making a final purchase. Till now, the
was exclusively online, but now we’re taking it offline exclusively through Reliance Digital,” said Vikas Agarwal, head of India operations for OnePlus.
“We’re increasing our in-shop promoters from 300 at present, who can help consumers understand the product when they see it in offline stores,” he said.
In order to cater to a larger section of the Indian market through online and offline, the smartphone maker aims to begin local production of its smart TVs by the end of the year, moving away from imports.
“We’re finalising a manufacturing partner for making TVs in India,” Agarwal said, adding that since there were supply constraints, the company will introduce smart TVs in a phased manner across Reliance Digital stores, beginning with the metros.
The company will also set up touch-and-feel experience centres, besides a network of service centres to cater to the offline market. OnePlus is on the premium end of the pricing spectrum, while others like Xiaomi, TCL, Lenovo-Motorola, Sansui and Metz are on the affordable end, with prices beginning from less than Rs 15,000, that have now entered the market to take away share from the incumbent players.
On the smartphone side, OnePlus plans to open 100 new experience centres by 2020 in top 50 cities, with its largest experience centre in Hyderabad, spanning across 16,000 sq ft. It signed on Redington India as its national distributor on Tuesday.