iPhone vs OnePlus: Who Is Leading The Premium Phone Market?

iPhone vs OnePlus

The drastic shift in consumer buying patterns in the smartphone industry has led to the battle of iPhone vs OnePlus. Reason? The rise in the disposable income in Indians. If you look 7-8 years back, smartphone brands like Xiaomi and Vivo were ruling the market.

But now the scenario has changed.

As per some recent reports, India is an emerging fastest-growing premium market in the world. With premium smartphones, we refer to the ones priced at or above $600 or Rs.50,000.

iPhone vs OnePlus

The volume growth of the premium segment is over three times in 2023 as compared to 2016.

Currently, the premium market segment is ruled by two players who are also in a fierce battle with each other i.e. iPhone vs OnePlus.

Let’s delve into the comparison analysis of iPhone vs OnePlus and find out who is leading the premium phone market in India.

Keep reading!

(A) iPhone vs OnePlus: Profile Comparison

First of all, let’s compare the profiles of both the premium smartphone companies-

Type of BrandSmartphone brand of AppleSubsidiary of BBK Electronics
Headquarters1 Apple Park Way, Cupertino, California, U.S.Tairan Building, Futian District, Shenzhen, Guangdong, China
FoundersSteve JobsPete Lau, Carl Pei
Founded 9 January 200716 December 2013
ProductsiPhone is specifically the smartphone brand of Apple. Other products of Apple include-
Apple TV
Apple Watch
Apple Vision Pro
Phone cases
Smart Watch
SoftwareiOSOxygenOS (based on Android)
iPhone vs OnePlus: Profile Comparison

Before delving further into the comparison of iPhone vs OnePlus, we need to understand the condition of the premium smartphone market in India. Go through the next section, and you will find out!

Note: We have already thoroughly compared the following smartphone brands-

You can go through them for detailed information.

(B) Synopsis of Premium Smartphone Market

iPhone vs OnePlus phones

In 2023, the premium smartphone market witnessed an impressive 6% YoY growth, setting a new record, as revealed by Counterpoint Research’s Market Pulse. This study focused on smartphones with a wholesale price of at least USD 600, approximately Rs 50,000. Notably, India emerged as the world’s fastest-growing premium market.

The volume growth in 2023 surpassed that of 2016 by three times, highlighting a remarkable surge in the premium segment. This positive trend stood in stark contrast to the overall decline in the global smartphone market, attributed to shifting consumer buying patterns within the industry.

Explaining this shift, Varun Mishra, a Senior Analyst at Counterpoint Research, noted, “Consumers are now inclined to spend more on high-quality smartphones that offer a longer usage lifespan, reflecting a change in their purchasing behavior.”

Apple maintained its dominance in the market, commanding a 71% share, closely followed by Samsung, Huawei, Xiaomi, and OPPO. While OnePlus’s market share was found to be 4.82%.

OnePlus demonstrated its prowess in the Indian smartphone landscape by claiming the title of the fastest-growing smartphone brand in the first half of 2023.  

Apple’s market share experienced a slight dip due to Huawei’s resurgence in China, driven by the Mate 60 series.

Breaking down the figures, Samsung secured the second position with a 17% shipment share, while Huawei claimed the third spot with a 5% share. Xiaomi and OPPO captured 2% and 1% of shipments, respectively, while other brands constituted a 4% market share.

Geographically, the growth was propelled by China, Western Europe, India, the Middle East, and Africa. Notably, China, India, MEA, and Latin America were anticipated to witness record-breaking figures.

The ultra-premium segment, featuring smartphones priced above $1000 (around Rs 80,000), played a pivotal role in driving the overall growth. This segment accounted for over one-third of total premium market sales in 2023.

Highlighting the societal impact, Mishra remarked, “Owning the latest flagships has become a status symbol, particularly in emerging markets where consumers transition directly from mid-price to premium bands. Additionally, these premium devices are becoming more accessible due to promotions and financing options.”

(C) iPhone vs OnePlus: Features Comparison

In this section, we will compare the features of both premium smartphone brands. 

Operating SystemiOS OxygenOS (based on Android)
Design and BuildPremium materials, sleek designPremium materials, sleek design 
DisplayHigh-quality Retina displayFluid AMOLED display with high refresh rate
PerformancePowerful Apple-designed chipsetsTop-tier Qualcomm Snapdragon processors
Camera SystemAdvanced camera system with computational photography featuresCompetitive camera setup with emphasis on versatility 
Ecosystem IntegrationSeamless integration with the Apple ecosystemLimited integration with third-party ecosystems
CustomizationLimited customization optionsExtensive customization through OxygenOS 
Price RangeGenerally higher price rangeTypically offers more affordable options
Brand LoyaltyStrong brand loyalty among usersGrowing community and appeal among tech enthusiasts
Software UpdatesTimely and consistent iOS updatesGenerally prompt OxygenOS updates
AvailabilityWorldwide availability Limited availability in certain regions 
iPhone vs OnePlus: Features Comparison

Here, I would like to say that the information in the table is quite general and may vary with specific iPhone and OnePlus models. Additionally, your personal preferences and needs may influence the choice between iPhone and OnePlus devices.

(D) Strength & Market Position of iPhone vs OnePlus

In the fiercely competitive premium phone market, both iPhone and OnePlus have carved out their niches. Let’s delve into the strengths and market positions of iPhone vs OnePlus-

StrengthsEcosystem IntegrationSeamlessly integrates with other Apple devices and servicesPerformanceQualcomm chipsets, bloat-free experience, and quick refresh rates. 
Quality and DesignPremium build, glass backs, and metal frames.AffordabilityMid-tier pricing for flagship-level features. 
PerformanceIndustry-leading chipsets and smooth user experience.Community FocusEngages with users and incorporates feedback. 
Market PositionHigh-End SegmentDominates the high-end market with premium pricing.Mid-Tier SegmentAppeals to budget-conscious consumers seeking high performance.
Brand LoyaltyStrong following among Apple enthusiasts.Tech EnthusiastsPopular among tech-savvy users.
Global PresenceWorldwide recognition and sales.Emerging MarketsExpanding presence in various regions. 
Strength & Market Position of iPhone vs OnePlus

What we observed from this table is that the iPhone maintains its strong foothold in the premium market. Whereas, OnePlus continues to disrupt with value-driven offerings. Ultimately, the choice depends on your preferences and priorities. 

(E) Sales, Market Share, & Achievements of iPhone in India

During Q3 2023, Apple secured a 6% market share in the smartphone industry. Projections indicate that Apple’s smartphone market share in India is expected to reach 8% by 2024. The implementation of attractive deals on its earlier models led to a notable 44% year-on-year growth in Apple’s shipments. 

Particularly dominant in the Super Premium segment (Rs 50,000-100,000), Apple commanded a significant 71% share in this category.

Notably, Apple experienced a substantial boost during the quarter, driven by impressive double-digit growth in the sales of its previous-generation iPhones. The growth trajectory in the Indian market remains robust, propelled by factors such as increased manufacturing, affordability initiatives, and aggressive efforts in both online and offline retail channels.

Apple’s strategic approach, coupled with enticing offers, continues to contribute to its strong presence and growth in the dynamic smartphone landscape in India.

Let’s see what the data says-

YearMarket Share of iPhoneShipments in India
20181%1.6 million
20191%1.9 million
20202%2.7 million
20214%4.5 million
20224%6.7 million
(71% in the premium segment)
Over 10 million
Market Share & Shipments of iPhone in India

According to IDC’s Singh, Apple dominates around two-thirds of the premium segment (Rs.50,000+) in the Indian market. Projected data suggests that Apple is on track to achieve nearly 10 million annual shipments in 2023, a significant increase from the 6.7 million recorded in 2022. 

The last quarter saw the iPhone 13 and 14 contributing to 75% of Apple’s overall volume in India, a trend expected to persist into the following year.

Continuing its upward trajectory, Apple has steadily increased its market share year-on-year. Starting from a 1% market share in 2019, Counterpoint data anticipates Apple ending 2023 with a 6% market share, reflecting a remarkable 34% year-on-year growth. 

This period marked a peak quarter for Apple in India, surpassing 2.5 million units in shipments.

Emphasizing India as a significant focus, CEO Tim Cook highlighted Apple’s “low share” in the country’s vast market and expressed optimism about the untapped potential. Despite lower average selling prices (ASPs) in India compared to other regions, Apple remains undeterred, setting record revenues for iPhones in India and other emerging markets. 

Cook’s remarks underscore Apple’s commitment to the Indian market and its recognition of the ample growth opportunities.

(F) Sales, Growth, & Achievements of OnePlus in India

In 2023, OnePlus experienced remarkable success in the dynamic Indian smartphone market. How? Look at the following table and you will find out-

Sales & GrowthData
OnePlus Open 5G Foldable Smartphone LaunchRecorded exceptional first-day sales at Reliance Digital and Amazon.in, topping the > ₹1 lakh price segment for 2023
Overall GrowthClaimed the title of the fastest-growing smartphone brand for H1 2023 with a remarkable YoY growth of over 70%, as per IDC’s 2Q23 release
Indian Market DominanceDominated the $400-600 (Mid to high-end) price segment in India for H1 2023 with a significant 40.6% market share in shipments
Flagship Devices ContributionOnePlus 11 and OnePlus 11R contributed to a quarter of shipments in the mentioned segment, according to IDC
Tablet Market EntryMade a notable entry into the tablet market, securing a top-three position in the mid-premium segment for Q2 2023
OnePlus Pad SuccessOnePlus Pad contributed to 34.5% of shipments in the mid-premium ($350-400) price segment in the Indian tablet market in Q2’23, as per IDC
Key Specifications and FeaturesImpressed with specifications including Fast & Smooth user experience, Hasselblad Camera for Fold, and spatial entertainment in a modern, ultra-portable foldable design
OnePlus Open AvailabilityWas available for open sale in India since October 27, 2023, priced at ₹1,39,999 in Voyager Black and Emerald Dusk colors
Sales ChannelsWas available through OnePlus.in, OnePlus Store App, OnePlus Experience Stores, Reliance Digital, Amazon.in, and select partner stores
Sales & Growth of OnePlus in India

The release of the OnePlus Open 5G foldable smartphone marked a major milestone, garnering impressive sales on its debut day at Reliance Digital and Amazon.in. This flagship device stood out among other foldable smartphones, becoming the best-selling device in the > ₹1 lakh price range for the entire year.

In the first half of 2023, OnePlus showcased its dominance in the Indian smartphone market, earning the title of the fastest-growing smartphone brand with a remarkable year-over-year growth of over 70%, according to IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Device Tracker for 2Q23. Additionally, OnePlus commanded a significant 40.6% market share in shipments in the $400-600 (Mid to high-end) price range, solidifying its position as a leading player in the industry.

This success was attributed to flagship devices like the OnePlus 11 and OnePlus 11R, which collectively accounted for a significant portion of shipments in this competitive segment, as per IDC. Furthermore, OnePlus expanded its presence beyond smartphones, entering the tablet market and securing a spot among the top three brands in the mid-premium segment for Q2 2023. The OnePlus Pad contributed significantly to this achievement, representing 34.5% of shipments!

(G) Business Comparison: iPhone vs OnePlus

Here comes the most anticipated part of this write-up. The business comparison of iPhone vs OnePlus will help you to determine- who is leading the premium smartphone market.

Business ParametersiPhoneOnePlus
RevenueRs 49,321 crore (FY 2022-23) Between INR 100 crore to 500 crore
Market Share in Premium Segment34% share (Q2 2021)48% share in 5G smartphone segment (Q2 2021)
ProfitNet profit of Rs 2,229 crore (FY 2022-23) 76% year-on-year growth in net profit (FY 2022-23)
GrowthDiverse portfolio and a strong reputation for future growthGlobal 200% year-on-year growth in Q2 2021
OutlookFastest flagship series to reach 1 million sales milestone (Q2 2021)Diverse portfolio and strong reputation for future growth
iPhone vs OnePlus: Business Comparison

In essence, while Apple has exhibited strong financial performance, significant growth in revenue and profit, and an established presence in the premium segment, OnePlus has made remarkable strides in market share and revenue within the premium smartphone segment in India. 

Both brands showcase positive outlooks for continued success in the competitive Indian smartphone market!

(H) Summing Up: iPhone vs OnePlus

iPhone vs OnePlus (summary)

In the ongoing battle of iPhone vs OnePlus for supremacy in the premium phone market, both contenders have showcased impressive feats. iPhone, with its record-breaking revenue and profits in India, continues to be a star in the premium segment. 

Meanwhile, OnePlus, driven by robust sales, market leadership, and diverse product offerings, stands as a formidable competitor. 

The comparison of the iPhone vs OnePlus reveals a dynamic landscape where Apple’s established presence contends with OnePlus’ rapid growth and innovation. As consumers weigh the pros and cons, the choice between iPhone vs OnePlus ultimately depends on individual preferences and priorities.

In the iPhone vs OnePlus debate, the two giants continually vie for dominance, shaping the future of the premium phone market with each technological stride and strategic move!

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Published By: Supti Nandi
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Rishi Yadav
Rishi Yadav
2 months ago

Yeah, iPhones are good, but Android phones are much better and offer great features, like this OnePlus phone!