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Samsung still smartphone king in India

It's good news for the company, as India's tech markets continue to grow at tremendous rates.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Samsung has had a rough few months, what with it losing billions of dollars following the Galaxy Note 7 recalls. But some good news for the company: It's performing as strong as ever in India.

Samsung is leading the country's phone manufacturer, cornering 22.6 percent of the smartphone market between July and September, according to Counterpoint Research. That's more than double that of its nearest competitor, Indian brand Micromax, which had a 9.9 percent market share.

Compared to the same quarter last year, Samsung's smartphone market share is down by a small fraction -- it held 23.2 percent of the market last year. However, it has a greater hold on the handset market as a whole. In India, where feature phones are still popular, the company had an overall handset market share of 22.6 percent, compared to 19 percent in the same quarter last year.

India is big business, with the country's smartphone sales eclipsing those in the United States last year for the first time. That makes the populous nation the world's second largest phone market, behind China. Growth isn't slowing down either, with Counterpoint Research analyst Karn Chauhan saying that Q3 was a "record quarter" for smart and feature phone sales.

It remains to be seen if Samsung's recall of the Note 7 will impact its performance in the country. However, with most smartphones sold in India costing under $150, it's unlikely the premium device would have made up a huge amount of the company's shipments.

Also noteworthy is the greater popularity of Chinese brands in India. Lenovo, who owns the Moto brand, was the third biggest smartphone brand in the country in Q3. Xiaomi cracked India's top five for the first time, which is good news for the company as its market share drops in China.