It’s been nearly three decades since the last M&Ms were launched in India.
But India is poised to become a much more lucrative market for its booming smartphone makers, with demand growing by almost 100 per cent since the introduction of the first smartphone in March 2017.
“The Indian smartphone market is expected to reach over 1.5 billion users in 2020,” said Kailash Agarwal, head of strategy and research at IDC India, a research group.
“That’s expected to be a growth rate of around 20 per cent,” he added.
The mobile phone market in India is expected have an annual revenue of about $2.2 trillion by 2020, according to research firm Strategy Analytics.
“India is one of the fastest-growing markets for smartphone sales worldwide, and is expected in 2020 to surpass the US as the world’s third-largest smartphone market,” said Mandy Daley, senior analyst at Strategy Analytics, in a research note.
The M-Series smartphones, which cost about $400 (Rs.1,200) each, were introduced by Indian tech giant Micromax in 2015 and have now been sold over 300 million times.
“They are well-received among consumers and are the most popular smartphones on the Indian market,” Mr Agarwall said.
Micromac’s latest models are powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor and have a 5-inch display and 2GB of RAM, along with 64GB of storage.
Micron is also in the process of launching a larger version of the M-series, called the M4 and M4 Plus.
Micramax is one among several Indian smartphone makers that have seen growth over the last two years, which has also seen its own mobile network and online shopping portals.
“We are in the early stages of launching the first M-4 smartphones in India,” said Ravi Kulkarni, CEO of the Indian mobile network operator Bharti Airtel, in an interview with New York magazine.
“This is an exciting opportunity for Micromex, which will help in expanding the base of its users.
We expect to have around 10 million M-Mobiles in the country by 2021.”
Micromak is also expected to launch the first mobile phone that can be used as a standalone device, a device that has not been available to the public in India for more than a decade.