China’s Realme eyes Europe’s high-end smartphone market with new launch


By David Kirton

Realme CEO and founder Sky Li poses for a picture during an interview with Reuters in Shenzhen

Realme CEO and founder Sky Li poses for an image throughout an interview with Reuters in Shenzhen

SHENZHEN, China (Reuters) – China’s Realme will enter Europe’s high-end handset market subsequent month with its priciest ever machine, its CEO advised Reuters, because it appears to be like to develop past its finances choices and promote 50% extra smartphones globally this yr.

The Shenzhen-based firm is amongst a number of Chinese language handset companies which were making aggressive strikes to grab international market share from Huawei Applied sciences, after stepped-up U.S. sanctions hobbled the previous prime smartphone maker’s provide chains and compelled it to retreat.

Man looks at mobile phone next to Realme logo during product launch event of X50 5G in Beijing

© Reuters/JASON LEE
Man appears to be like at cell phone subsequent to Realme emblem throughout product launch occasion of X50 5G in Beijing

Realme plans to start out promoting its premium GT 2 Professional cellphone throughout Europe in February for $700-$800, founder and CEO Sky Li mentioned.

That is virtually double the 349 euros ($395) instructed worth of the GT Grasp Version it presently sells by Amazon and close to the costs of different high-end telephones from market leaders Apple and Samsung.

“We expect it is a vital, market, and a giant marketplace for high-end telephones,” Li mentioned.

With the pandemic affecting financial situations, demand for smartphones is sluggish and shoppers are ready longer to improve, however because the world’s quickest rising smartphone firm, Realme can buck that development, Li added.

Counterpoint Analysis estimates Europe’s smartphone market generated revenues of $80.65 billion within the first 11 months of 2021, of which high-end gadgets accounted for $55.56 billion.

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“Nearly the entire development is pushed by the high-end, which could be attributed primarily to the profitable premium fashions of Apple and Samsung,” Counterpoint senior analyst Yang Wang mentioned.

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Apple, whose costs for its iPhone 13 begin at round $850, was Europe’s best-selling producer final quarter, adopted by Samsung and Xiaomi, whose telephones are priced at round $900 and $700 respectively, in keeping with Counterpoint.

Knowledge from consultancy IDC exhibits the European market was corresponding to the US within the first three quarters of 2021 when it comes to smartphone revenues, however lagged behind China.


Spun off from fellow Chinese language smartphone maker Oppo in 2018, Realme was the world’s sixth-biggest smartphone vendor as of end-September, in keeping with Counterpoint, with robust gross sales in India, Southeast Asia and Japanese Europe.

Realme, Oppo and different rivals Vivo and Oneplus hint their origins again to BBK Electronics, a Shenzhen-based conglomerate.

Li mentioned he expects the G2 Professional cellphone to enchantment to European clients as a result of it is without doubt one of the first telephones to launch with Qualcomm’s new flagship Snapdragon 8gen1 processor, which guarantees larger pace and energy effectivity.

Realme bought 60 million handsets in 2021 globally and goals to promote 90 million this yr and over 100 million in 2023, Li mentioned.

The corporate, like its friends, has been hit by semiconductor shortages over the past yr, however Li mentioned the constraints might ease by the second half of 2022.

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Whereas friends together with Oppo, Vivo, Xiaomi are making forays into processors and electrical automobiles, Realme will keep targeted on telephones, “with no different ideas or distractions”, Li mentioned.

“It is not simple to outlive in an trade so stuffed with consultants, so we mustn’t do issues past our capability,” he mentioned.

($1 = 0.8843 euros) (This story corrects GT 2 Professional worth to $700-$800, not 700-800 euros, after firm corrected it. Additionally fixes GT Grasp Version worth to 349 euros, not $349.)

(Reporting by David Kirton; Modifying by Himani Sarkar)