30 December 2019
Realme started off as an online exclusive smartphone brand but expanded to the offline market in India late last year. It currently holds about 3 to 5% market share in the offline space but is planning to increase the footprint. Realme CEO Madhav Sheth has revealed that an offline-centric Realme smartphone series will be released in India during the early parts of 2020.
Sheth added that smartphones in the series will cover all price segments. It means entry-level and mid-range smartphones are almost confirmed but Realme X2 Pro was released yesterday as the first Realme Android flagship. It seems unlikely but there is a slim chance that it might release a flagship-level phone in the series as well.
It is worth noting that the upcoming series is referred to as "offline-centric" and not offline exclusive. The series is expected to be limited to the offline market in the beginning and then come to online shopping platforms.
Sheth told Gadgets360,
"I would say, all our phones will be available online and offline. But this [the new smartphone series] would be specifically designed mainly for offline customers, and it will also be present online. We'll be having all the price segments."
Realme's plans to expand its offline presence is not limited to releasing a new smartphone series for the market. It is also working on opening up Realme exclusive stores around the country. This will be a crucial step for the brand as its closest rivals like Xiaomi and Samsung have a number of offline stores in India. But Sheth has clarified that they are not chasing numbers when it comes to offline stores.
"Our exclusive store is not about having multiple hundreds of stores. We'll be having maybe just four or five stores in a year [or] maybe 10 stores. This is for the customers' experience for all the Realme products because Realme is not just a smartphone brand, it's going to be a tech lifestyle brand."
Realme is currently the fourth biggest and the highest growing smartphone brand in India. It registered an insane 400% YoY growth in the past quarter which is not surprising at all. Its decision to focus on the offline market along with online space could help it push and break into the top three in the coming years.