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Realme shakes up the smartphone market

This is the new brand that is rising. Unknown a few months ago, realme (the brand has opted for a name without a capital letter) has managed to become, in the last quarter of 2019, the seventh largest global manufacturers of smartphone with over 10 million units sold, capturing 3% of the market, according to Counterpoint Research... An enormous breakthrough which has enabled him to dethrone LG and Motorola one of the biggest sellers in the sector.

truth be told, this company does not start from zero. Based in Shenzen, China, it belongs to the group of chinese BBK Electronics, which already owns the brand Oppo, OnePlus and Vivo. Originally, it was a sub-brand of Oppo, called Oppo Real, whose products were sold only in China. Become a brand in its own right in may 2018, realme first established itself in Asia before landing in Europe in may 2019 and then in France at the beginning of this year.

The idea of transforming a range of product to make it an independent brand recalls the initiative of Huawei, which has done the same to launch the brand Honor in 2014. With still a big difference: while smartphones Honor are in most of the smartphones Huawei slightly modified, the apparatus of the realme don't have much to do with those from Oppo. Components, design and materials to make products that are clearly different. And the leaders of the realme consider Oppo, OnePlus and Vivo, such as competitors, while Huawei has seen in Honor that it is extending its offer to venturing into new distribution modes.

Smartphone at good price

"We have a special positioning compared to other brands of the group, explains Katrina Lee, head of the realme to the western Europe. We speak more especially to young people, and we experiment with original ideas in terms of design and price". In fact, realme has a very wide range made up of models very affordable price, of 159 euros for the 5i entry-less than 600 euros for the flagship of the brand, the X50 Pro, which has characteristics comparable to models from major manufacturers sold more than 1000 euros compatibility: 5G, quad camera sensor, 64-megapixel camera, Amoled screen at 90 Hz, processor Snapdragon 865 with cooling system by steam... "We offer the best technology at the lowest price," says Katrina Lee. A formula that recalls inevitably that of another chinese manufacturer, Xiaomi. Because the small manufacturer from Beijing, became in record time the fourth manufacturer in the world of smartphones, is both the model and the competitor to shoot down. Like Xiaomi, realme specializes in smartphone performance at a good price, but also in the associated accessories (watches and bracelets connected, headphones). Like Xiaomi, realme meeting its major success in India (1 million phones sold in 3 days last year and today 14% of market share) and in south-east Asia. And as Xiaomi, realme sells its phones only on the Internet. "This strategy allows us to reduce costs but also to respond better to the expectations of the young people who have the habit of buying online," points out Katrina Lee.

In France, where it has just been set up, the brand distributes its products on its website but it is "in discussion with the operators" to broaden its distribution. Here, too, his officers intend to score points by taking into account the peculiarities of the market. "We offer a very extensive range, which allows us to better understand what our customers want and we have to adapt, says Katrina Lee. Compared to other countries, the French like to enjoy life and take pictures. They are interested in the fine screens and cameras performance but also in design. One feels that for them, visual appearance and touch are very important." Observations, which could allow the smaller brand to change the game in an area that regularly attracts new entrants.

SujetsRealmeXiaomiOppoHuwaeiSmartphoneaucun comment

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