After Apple, it is now Taiwanese firm Asus that has slashed prices of its Zenfone range of smartphones by up to Rs 3,000. Following the roll out of GST from July 1, Apple has reduced the prices of its products in India to pass on the benefits to customers.
The price of Zenfone 3 (5.5) has been reduced by Rs 3,000 to Rs 16,999. Similarly, Zenfone 3 Max 5.5 will be available for Rs 14,999 instead of Rs 15,999 earlier. “Both Zenfone 3 and Zenfone 3 Max series have received an overwhelming response in India, and we are happy to offer a new exciting price for both the models,” Asus Region Head South Asia and Country Manager India Peter Chang said in a statement.
The company did not clarify if the Goods and Services Tax (GST) roll out had prompted Asus to slash prices. Under GST, mobile handsets are being taxed at 12 per cent as compared to an earlier range of 8-18 per cent depending on the states. Interestingly, the government has also introduced a 10 per cent basic customs duty on mobile phones and certain parts, in a bid to promote domestic manufacturing.
Asus manufactures its Zenfone 3 Max in India, while the Zenfone 3 in imported. The price reduction could help the company expand its foothold in the intensely competitive smartphone market.
India is one of the fastest growing mobile phone markets globally. While feature phones sales have been growing at a slow pace, that of smartphones have grown at a faster speed on the back of rising consumption and falling data prices.
While players like Samsung, Micromax and Lava have had a significant hold of the market, Chinese players like Lenovo, vivo and Oppo are aggressively eating into their market share. The competition among these players is fierce, especially in the affordable (Rs 12,000 and below) and mid-range (Rs 12,000-20,000) handsets.