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Chinese mobile phones popular in Vietnam, a threat to iPhone’s position

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Chinese mobile phone brands only had to spend five years to grab a high market share in the Vietnamese mobile phone market.

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Chinese brands are present in all market segments


The Chinese brands are present in all market segments, from low-cost to high-end.

In the past in Vietnam, Chinese mobile phones meant low-quality products which imitated the designs of Nokia and Sony. 

But now, as Nokia has sold its brand and Sony is considering stopping making smartphones, Chinese brands such as Huawei, Xiaomi and Oppo have emerged as a new power.

At first, Chinese mobile phones, mostly counterfeiting famous products, were brought to Vietnam across border gates. They quickly disappeared from the market because of low quality.

Later, private Vietnamese enterprises imported low-cost Chinese products to sell in Vietnam. Though the products had better quality, they were still refused by consumers.

Only when Chinese manufacturers launched massive marketing campaigns in Vietnam did Vietnamese begin using Chinese phones.

Joining the market in 2013, Oppo was the first Chinese brand catching Vietnamese attention. With powerful financial capability, the manufacturer uses Vietnamese celebrities to advertise its products. The name Oppo has been on the national TV channel VTV3 since 2014 as the sponsor for some game shows.

The marketing strategy has helped Oppo become the second biggest market share holder in Vietnam.

Unlike Oppo, Xiaomi does not have advertisement campaigns, but low retail prices. With the boom of online games, Xiaomi is getting better known among students. 

Huawei, another Chinese brand, has become a rival in the medium- and high-end market segments.

Analysts say that Chinese brands have been following methodical strategies to penetrate the Vietnamese market. Customization allows them to satisfy nearly all requirements by Vietnamese consumers. 

Meanwhile, each manufacturer has its own advantages. Those who want to take pictures will choose Oppo, while Xiaomi will be useful to gamers and Huawei is reserved for those who want a valuable experience.  

Currently, three out of five leading positions in Vietnam belong to Chinese brands. According to Counterpoint Research, the biggest market shareholders are Samsung, Oppo, Xiaomi, Apple and Huawei. Apple’s market share in Vietnam has been decreasing while Xiaomi and Huawei have seen impressive growth.

However, analysts said the market would see big changes in 2019 when more Vietnamese branded products hit the market. Vietnamese consumers have shown great interest in Vsmart and BKAV products, which have high quality and reasonable prices.


Source: VietNamNet

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