New Delhi: Homegrown brands like Boat and Noise have found an area where they can give stiff competition to global companies and continue to thrive. True Wireless Stereo or TWS earbuds, as it is popularly known, witnessed record growth in the country amid increasing demand in the personal audio market. The country’s TWS market posted 55 per cent YoY growth in the third quarter alone, to reach the highest shipments ever at around 8 million, according to Counterpoint Research.
Riding on the back of budget offerings and integrated marketing strategy, domestic electronics brand Boat dominated India’s TWS market this year with more than 35 per cent share. Another homegrown brand that defied the odds and outpaced other TWS makers was Noise that launched multiple TWS buds in 2021 in the budget segment. The only other brand that secured a spot in the top 3 TWS makers was Realme.
Unlike smartphones that were hit by the global chipset and component crisis, the TWS category grew, thanks to the continued content growth and rising mobile video consumption and industry analysts say that India’s TWS market is poised to grow further in 2022. The TWS market will also remain unfazed by the global chipset shortage as it is still majorly driven by imports.
“Trends of brands removing the earphone jack from smartphones, not including the earphones in the smartphone box drive the market demand. Q3 was specifically higher as brands pushed high amounts of inventory into the retail channels ahead of the festive season. Along with this, new entrants, discount offers, sales events and brands expanding into the low-price segments with feature-rich TWS offerings were the major success factors, Anshika Jain, Senior Analyst, Counterpoint Research, told ABP Live.
“More companies are partnering with ODMs to bring made-in-India devices and enhance their production capabilities,” noted Jain.
The top three brands in the budget segment were homegrown Boat, Realme and Noise and in terms of models, Boat’s Airdopes 131 was the bestseller as it crossed 1 million units shipments for the first time, according to Counterpoint Research.
However, the premium segment of TWS buds was dominated by the likes of Apple and Samsung. Another brand that broke into the top three brands in the premium TWS segment was Carl Pei-backed Nothing that captured a 7 per cent share in the segment.
“We all know that because of remote working voice/audio experience became important and everyone wanted to carve out personal space out of shared common infrastructure in homes. Though in 2021, the hybrid mode of work started for many, TWS usage crept into offices as well,” echoing similar views, Faisal Kawoosa, Founder and Chief Analyst, Techarc, said.
Another factor contributing to the growth of homegrown TWS makers is their growing collaboration with ODMs and that is why domestic manufacturing is gaining more significance.
Homegrown brand Noise has partnered with Optiemus, and promised to announce multiple locally-made devices in future. Realme has also announced a partnership with Khy Electronics while Ambrane has set up a unit to locally manufacture audio devices. Ptron has also enhanced its domestic manufacturing capabilities this quarter and expects to double its TWS revenue by next year.
Next year will witness new launches from established TWS brands and also see an entry of new brands that will focus on value for money devices.