SPPL’s Avneet Singh Marwah on the smart TV segment’s evolution in India

SPPL's perspective on the smart TV segment in India

The smart TV segment in India has seen significant growth in recent times, and the reasons are obvious. We had a quick chat with Avneet Singh Marwah, CEO of Super Plastronics Pvt Ltd, to understand how the market has evolved. SPPL is the exclusive brand licensee of Blaupunkt TVs in India, and has just launched a new range of QLED TVs featuring the new Google TV platform. 

Q. SPPL has been in the smart TV segment for a while now. Please give us an idea of this segment in terms of how the demand has changed over the last couple of years and the kind of features the consumers want these days.

We launched our first smart TV in 2013-14, and since then we have seen tremendous growth. As if today 90 percent of the market share is smart in India. In terms of OS, the largest market share in India is with Android at about 82 percent. There has been a complete shift from AOSP to Android now in the market. As consumers wanted to experience OTT content on a larger screen, Android enabled their ecosystem in smart TVs. Features like 10,000 Apps and games, Google Assistant, Android OS updates, and Dolby technologies like Dolby Atmos, Vision, DTS, Dolby MS12, HDR 10 etc have helped provide a better experience.

Q. What screen size is the most in-demand these days, and what is the consumer response to technologies like QLED and OLED?

As the pandemic brought people back to larger screens to view content on, consumers are now exploring new technologies and even a second TV for their homes. The 32-inch smart is well on its way to becoming a high-selling option in the semi-rural market and in the urban market, it’s 43-inch 4k which is taking the lead.

QLEDs and 4K TVs in larger screen sizes are not far behind. Consumers are looking to upgrade their sets with better equipped and larger-sized TVs as per our estimates and market intelligence.

Q. You have multiple brands, including Kodak, Thomson, Blaupunkt, etc, all under the SPPL umbrella. What are the positioning and differentiation factors among the different brands?

We have a different brand strategy for all our brands, and we have positioned them differently segment-wise which has really worked well for us. In one brand, we have focused on premium sound, in another brand premium affordability in the online market, and one brand availability across all channels online, LFR and GT with the best prices.

Q. SPPL is the only Indian smart TV manufacturer that now has Google TV-certified smart televisions. Give us an India of what the certification process involves, and how you plan to leverage this as an advantage.

The journey to get an Android and Google TV license has been strong. We have managed to achieve YOY growth despite the pandemic, we have been able to fulfil the units committed and I would like to give credit to our strategic partner Flipkart.

Q. You just launched a new range of Blaupunkt QLED TVs with Google TV. Please give us some key highlights of the new devices and what potential buyers can look forward to.

We feel really proud and Honour that we are India’s first manufacturing brand to launch QLED with Google TV, even before the Chinese smartphone brands. The Blaupunkt QLED Google TV is the best specced TV which includes Dolby Vision, Atmos, DTS, HDR10 plus, Dolby MS12, with sound output of 60 watts, which is the best in the segment. Along with that, it comes with far-field technology which is hands free.

Q. Do you think the smart TV segment in India has matured? What is the kind of growth you expect in the short term, and the strategy for the different brands you have under SPPL?

As I have mentioned before, the smart TV market in India is about 90 percent, and about 5 percent consumers are using streaming sticks to upgrade their TVs.

We are expecting a GMV growth of 100 percent in Blaupunkt this year, with the major contribution coming from QLED TVs, since we are launching QLED at the same price point as 4K TVs to capture the maximum market share.