After many years of double-digit retail volume and current value growth, in 2020 luxury portable consumer electronics has turned to decline. With the emergence of COVID-19 in the country in the first half of the year, the government implemented a nationwide lockdown, during which non-essential stores were closed, with further closures in different regions later in the year as required.
Nevertheless, store-based retailing has continued to dominate sales in luxury portable consumer electronics in 2020. Most consumers purchasing luxury mobile phones or luxury wearables still strongly believe in viewing, feeling and experiencing these high-ticket items, as well as discussing them with experienced staff in a store before making a purchase.
Many Indian consumers are now in a wait and see mindset when it comes to their spending, since they are unsure of the spread of COVID-19 and its impact on the economy and their wealth. Even significant price declines have been unable to stimulate retail volume growth in 2020.
Luxury portable consumer electronics is expected to return to growth in 2021, although in retail volume terms the increase can hardly be described as dynamic, with luxury mobile phones not even expected to return to retail volume growth until the following year. It is likely to take some time for consumer confidence to return, with the rates of growth expected to increase gradually over the course of the forecast period.
Consumers’ shopping journey for luxury items has been changing as a result of COVID-19. Wealthy Indians now more than ever have been encouraged to explore the digital environment before going to look in physical stores.
Before COVID-19 hit the Indian market, so-called HENRYs (High-Earners-Not–Rich-Yet) or aspirational consumers were amongst the key consumers of luxury portable consumer electronics. However, their weakening purchasing power as a result of the economic impact of measures taken to control the spread of the virus is likely to hamper the return to growth of this category in the forecast period, depending on the duration of economic difficulties.
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Understand the latest market trends and future growth opportunities for the Luxury Portable Consumer Electronics industry in India with research from Euromonitor International's team of in-country analysts – experts by industry and geographic specialisation.
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This report originates from Passport, our Luxury Portable Consumer Electronics research and analysis database.
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