Chinese investors charge into Vietnam smartphone market

10:27 | 22/10/2013
Chinese technology groups have moved aggressively into Vietnam’s smartphone market.

In October, OPPO and Haier Group rolled out their first smartphones in Vietnam. Both have partnered with Viettel Trade, Import and Export Company under the military’s telco giant Viettel.

Under a deal inked in early October between Viettel and OPPO’s local subsidiary, the former will distribute six smartphone models priced between $166-$476 throughout Vietnam.

OPPO’s latest N1 smartphone has a rotating camera and plans to release it in Vietnam by the end of October. It will be at the top end of the company’s price range.

OPPO’s core business is the manufacture and distribution of audio equipment and DVD players and first appeared in Vietnam in 2012 with the launch of its Find 5 smartphone that had a full HD screen and quad core chip.

In joining with Viettel, the Chinese group looks to tap its partner’s expansive network of more than 1,000 outlets throughout the country.

Like OPPO, home appliance giant Haier Group debuted in Vietnam early this month by also partnering with Viettel.

In Vietnam, Haier plans to sell medium-range smartphones at prices suitable to most local consumers.

Earlier this year Lenovo launched six new smartphone models. The group has the second highest market share in China, only behind Korea’s Samsung.

In April, Huawei Group announced it would also be entering the market and plans to sell 400,000 units this year. In July the company released its top-of-the-line, ultra-thin 6.18mm Ascend P6 through the The Gioi Di Dong electronics superstore chain, one of the largest mobile phone distributors in the country.

According to OPPO Vietnam sales director Do Quang Kha, OPPO’s goal is to become on of the top three smartphone manufacturers in Vietnam within the next five years by targeting tech-savvy young people.

Kha said that OPPO saw Vietnam as a lucrative smartphone market as ssmartphone users currently account for 30-40 per cent of the country’s total subscriptions.

According to Huawei Device Southeast Asia managing director Thomas Liu the number of smartphone users in Vietnam is expected to increase substantially over the next five years. 

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