Analyst: Samsung, BlackBerry marketing tends to mentally enslave the Indian consumer

“Trip Chowdhry of Global Equities Research today reiterates an Overweight rating on shares of Apple (AAPL) and a $650 price target, while opining that in India, the company’s products are ‘not very popular,’ based on his conversations with ‘about 30 – 35 people around Apple Reseller Stores’ in the subcontinent,” Tiernan Ray reports for Barron’s. “Those resellers, dubbed ‘iWorld,’ are ‘very few in number and poorly located,’ he observes, adding to the fundamental obstacle that only about 60 million people in India can afford Apple’s products, he believes, out of a population of about a billion.”

“Apple is ‘outmarketed’ in India by BlackBerry (BBRY) and Samsung Electronics (005930KS), writes Chowdhry,” Ray reports. “Chowdhry notes Apple hasn’t garnered the “elite” brand that BlackBerry and Samsung have cultivated: ‘Samsung and Blackberry have constantly advertised themselves as the ‘elite’ ones. In this way, they create an environment where they tend to mentally enslave the consumer to buy their products. In terms of advertising, one is likely to see Samsung Ad in every 15 minutes on television, whereas Apple Ads are rarely there. Apple Ads are only flashed at the time when a new iPhone is being launched.'”

Ray reports, “Despite that elite branding, Chowdhry thinks consumers buy a Samsung phone thinking they’re getting a ‘cheaper iPhone,’ and basically have no knowledge of Apple features and services such as iCloud… Despite all of that, Chowdhry concludes that the 60 million who can buy an iPhone is ‘no chicken feed,’ as it is ‘the total population of the U.K.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We meet a lot of misguided souls here in the U.S. who think their Android phones are “just like iPhone.” They’re just like the old Windows sufferers who thought they had a PC that was “just like a Mac.” They either wise up eventually or they suffer for life with frustration and lost time. Either way is quite fine with us; both outcomes make us exceedingly happy.

Do not reward thieves. Do not finance knockoffs. Do not proclaim inferior, insecure knockoffs to be as good as – or even more laughably, better than – the original, lest you be thought an idiot by those in the know.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Fred Mertz” and “Jubei Kiwagami” for the heads up.]

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Apple iPhone 4 sales triple in India on new buyback program – April 11, 2013
Apple to triple exclusive stores in India to 200 locations by 2015, sources say – March 26, 2013
Apple cracks India’s smartphone market – March 13, 2013
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Apple’s iPhone sales in India rise four-fold in 3 months – February 8, 2013
Apple launches iTunes Store in Russia, Turkey, India, South Africa and 52 additional countries – December 4, 2012
Apple iPhone 5 coming to India on November 2, App Store adopts rupee pricing – October 26, 2012
Apple counters cheap Android phones in India by relaunching unlocked iPhone 3GS – June 28, 2011
High prices for Apple iPhone 3G in India causes disappointment, outrage – August 25, 2008
Apple faces big challenges in bringing iPhone to India, world’s fastest growing mobile phone market – December 26, 2007


    1. India has a growing middle class with money to spend on cars and iPhones if they choose. There are a few million or more millionaires there also and if you were to take the top 400 million Indians who are economically well off, you would have a nearly identical population to the US. I have been to India several times and I have met my many ex-relatives who are all middle class and are financially well off.

      Yes there are poor in India but smart phones are not marketed to them yet. They may opt for smart phones instead of computers if they start moving into the middle classes.

    2. In addition to the large and growing population of wealthy and middle class people in India, dig this – poor people (who you are so quick disparage) are much more likely to use a cell phone as their primary Internet device – because they tend to be cheaper than computers.

        1. Thanks. My word choice was off with ‘disparage’ – I meant something more along the lines of being quick to dismiss their importance as potential customers for Apple.

  1. It looks like the Samsung magic worked on them. An entire country is brainwashed beyond repair. Screw ripping off Apple, brainwashing people to buy their products with dirty, immoral lies is ShameScams real crime.

  2. i am extremely glad to see that the first comment was deleted. for those of you who didn’t get to see it, it was an abomination, probably worse than anything you could imagine. i just sat here for a few minutes trying to figure out how you could reply to something like that.

          1. You’re quite a comedian.
            I do NOT call people names, belittle them, or swear at them because they have an opinion different from mine.
            I call you botvijerk and tell you to fuck off, because name-calling and swearing is a large percentage of what you do. Since you don’t respond to polite requests to be polite, I thought I’d try something else.
            But even if it doesn’t work in the sense of you ever changing your behavior, maybe eventually MDN will get fed up of the crap generated by the likes of you, sfgh and a few others.

            1. hypocrisy |hiˈpäkrisē|

              noun ( pl. hypocrisies )

              the practice of claiming to have moral standards or beliefs to which one’s own behavior does not conform; pretense.

            2. I will try to parse this out for you Seamus:

              a. “I do NOT call people names.”

              b. “I call you botvijerk and tell you to fuck off.”

              c. the practice of claiming to have moral standards or beliefs to which one’s own behavior does not conform.

              I hope that clarifies “of which you are the ringleader.”

  3. chowdhry thinks his countrymen are stupid, buying Blackberry or
    Samsung thinking they’re getting ‘ cheap iPhones’. Hey chowdhry,
    stop insulting them.

  4. The real reason why iPhone don’t sell that well in India is its price, not Samsung or BB’s marketing. Another big reason is iPhone’s lack of interoperability with other phones, example, lack of bluetooth filetransfer with phones from other device makers. The most trusted brand in India is Nokia (Yes still). Not Samsung. It is difficult to convince a lot of people that Nokia is in trouble. Even rich people are reluctant to pay around Rs 35,000 for a smart phone. So iPhone at 45000, who are Apple’s target cutsomers. A few super rich ?

  5. Exactly. But in the US, it exists. It’s the iPhone 4, and it’s a great tool for those of us who has it. It’s not as good as iPhone 5, but it’s still an amazing piece of tech. And the best part is that it’s free if you sign up on contract. I think it would be a good business move for AAPL to sell older iPhone 4S in China.

  6. Obviously MDN is not much of a world traveler. Different countries. Different cultures. Different approaches to life. Any smart marketer knows this. You cater your product to the market you’re in. BlackBerry has been sold all over the world for a number of years. So they obviously have a head start on brand recognition. And at one time they were THE phone to own. Nokia has been selling phones all over the world for many years also. They too have brand recognition as an affordable phone. Samsung markets their phones all over the world heavily. In the past all I saw in Europe and Asia were BlackBerry and Nokia phones. Now you see a lot of Samsung phones as well as iPhones too. Apple doesn’t seem to advertise around the world like you would think they would. And they never have run a lot of TV ads in the US. But they didn’t have competition four or five years ago either. Advertising is the one area where it seems Apple just doesn’t put any effort. If Coca-Cola still advertises heavily that should tell you something.

    1. “If Coca-Cola still advertises heavily that should tell you something.”

      According to Coke’s site, there are 1.8B servings of Coca-Cola sold each day.

      Constant advertising is necessary in a market where every single buyer is making a brand choice every single day, and there is no ecosystem to tie you to your “platform.”

      Cell phone consumers are making their decision once every two years or so.

      Apple used to advertise more heavily than they are now, in my opinion. I can think of a few reasons why that might be so:
      1) Advertising had little impact on sales trends; and/or
      2) A major overhaul of everything is on the way; and/or
      3) They’ve just plain dropped the ball

      I listed those in the order I think most likely. Feel free to add your own or re-order the list!

    2. Of course Coca Cola advertises. They don’t make quality products – they sell sugar water to idiots. Take away marketing and the ignorant masses would start to notice that water is way more economical, refreshing, and healthier for everyone.

        1. That’s true in many parts of the world – when traveling I usually just drink whatever the locals are drinking – especially when they are getting drunk. In my experience in America, many people have quality drinking water on tap and dismiss it unreasonably. There’s much more stringent quality control on tap water in this country than on bottled water (which is often just tap water that’s been sitting a plastic container) or soft drinks (full of unhealthy ingredients listed on the label) or beer (which is strangely not required to disclose nutritional information or ingredients in the USA).

  7. So essentially Apple has a tremendous opertunity in India. I don’t believe Apple has to go after the low end segment. Get the ones that matters for profitability.

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