As a Xiaomi smartphone user, Brandon Nkaiseli said the major reason for him choosing the Chinese brand is that he can access all the available technology using the gadget.
“What most of us look for is the technology. And the advantage of Chinese phones is that they offer the latest technology, but at affordable prices,” he said. “I believe through Chinese phones, Africans will always be on par with the latest trends.”
Like Nkaiseli, more people in Kenya and other countries in Africa have been up to date with the latest information and technology using Chinese smartphones, resulting in Chinese brands dominating the continent’s market.
Two of the top three smartphone brands in the African market are Chinese. Transsion brands led the market in the third quarter of this year with a share of 47 percent, while Xiaomi ranked third with a 6 percent market share, according to a report by global research firm International Data Corporation last week. Samsung placed second with a share of 21 percent in Africa.
Mercy Kamau, an electronic business owner, is one of thousands in Kenya that distribute products both from China and Western countries. Kamau said Chinese products usually move the fastest.
Chinese products come in a wide range of prices to suit different groups of customers, which make them more popular, she said.
“It depends on what the customer is asking for. Chinese manufacturers know what the customer wants. If it’s a phone for $15, I have it. If it’s a phone for $250, I still have it,” she said.
Taher Abdel-Hameed, a senior research analyst at IDC, said the increased specifications and smartphone attributes from China are making prices competitive, resulting in sales growth in the continent.