India's second COVID wave is forcing smartphone makers to delay new launches
What you need to know
- Xiaomi, Realme, Vivo, and many other smartphone brands have delayed their planned launches for May.
- The second wave of COVID-19 in India is expected to have a negative impact on consumer demand and lead to supply chain disruptions.
- A total of 26 new phones were launched in India in April.
As India continues to fight second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, most leading smartphone brands have decided to delay their planned phone launches for May. According to a report from ET Telecom, the companies are anticipating a slump in consumer demand and "challengers in distribution and manufacturing process" due to the rising number of infections in the country. While a nationwide lockdown hasn't been announced yet, many states have imposed strict restrictions to slow the spread of the virus.
There are currently just nine launches planned for the second half of May, out of which most are likely to be postponed. ASUS, which had planned to launch its ZenFone 8 series phones in country on May 12, has deferred the launch "until the current scenario improves." Realme was also planning to introduce the Realme X7 Max 5G in India this month, but it is now "evaluating a suitable date" for the phone's debut. Some of the other companies that have delayed new launches include Xiaomi sub-brand POCO, Vivo, Samsung, and Micromax.
Xiaomi is the only major smartphone maker that is holding a "big" launch event in the country this month. The company is expected to unveil the a more affordable version of its best cheap Android phone and a few other new products at the May 14 event.
As per data from Counterpoint Research, there were at least 30 new launches in May during the pre-pandemic years. A total of 22 new phones were launched in the country in March this year, while April saw 26 new launches.
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