- POCO is all set to enter the offline market in India this year.
- The brand is expected to introduce some ecosystem products in India.
- The company plans to scale its exclusive service centres in the country.
POCO’s X5 Pro smartphone is set to launch in India in the coming days. While it is seemingly set to launch on February 6, we are still waiting for confirmation. Smartphone enthusiasts who have followed POCO’s journey so far have seen massive popularity and product portfolio growth in the last few years. In our opinion, POCO has one of the most straightforward portfolios where the top-of-the-line F-series is targeted towards users who want a no-compromise device from the brand. At the same time, the X-series is a smartphone for performance-driven users who can’t spend around Rs 30,000. The POCO C and M series are catering to a mass market audience.
Just days before its next big launch, POCO has revealed a major development that may help strengthen the company’s overall presence in India. POCO India will finally have an offline presence this year, told Himanshu Tandon, Country Head, POCO India.
While talking to MySmartPrice, Tandon shared the news about launching an offline presence soon for the brand, “Happy to share that we will be expanding into the offline market and will start with selected cities initially. The plan is to launch offline stores in the top 10 cities in the next few months, where we will appoint distributors where POCO will be available through these channels. But it will be a very gradual approach that we are taking since we are an online-centric brand. So this year, in terms of our growth aspirations, we are pretty aggressive this time around. This is after the feedback we received over the last two years that people want POCO phones in the offline market. So we have plans, and I think the announcement will be soon.”
On being asked whether 2023 will be the year POCO finally evolves and introduces some ecosystem products? Tandon said, “Another important question that people have been asking us in the last 6 months has been around ecosystem products. We are in finalised stages of some of the key non-mobile categories, and hopefully, you will see non-mobile category POCO products this year, and that’s for sure. Just to add, POCO already offers some non-mobile ecosystem products in global markets, but for India, we want to make sure we offer India-specific products.”
Looking at some recent launches, 2023 could be the year when smartphone prices see a slight bump. So we wanted to understand whether POCO will continue to offer its products at aggressive pricing or whether we should expect a slight increase in prices. Tandon explained, “We will still be the most aggressive brand in the market, but overall there has been a tectonic shift in the pricing because of the rupee depreciation. If you compare from last year, the USD compared to the rupee has gone above around 10%, impacting the overall pricing. So we will still stick to our brand ethos of price to performance, and we will be very aggressive this year, but overall, there will be a general shift in the smartphone prices.”
Talking about after-sales service on whether POCO has any developments on this crucial front, “So, this was one of the first questions that I was asked when I joined POCO as Country Head. Last year, we opened our very first POCO exclusive service centre in Kolkata, and that was a differentiating factor for us as the service centre was a pink service centre. It was a first-of-a-kind concept where women ran that service centre entirely. In fact, the engineers were also women, which is very hard to find. So that was the first initiative. Then, our second service centre was opened in Ghatkopar, Mumbai. This year we want to scale our exclusive service centres first in the main cities and then, the basis of the feedback, scale it up,” Tandon added.
With the POCO X5 Pro launch in the first half, the company is already setting its plan in motion for the year. The company also signed India cricketer and T20 captain Hardik Pandya as its brand ambassador.
What are your expectations from POCO’s upcoming X5 Pro smartphone in India? Let us know in the comments section.