Update [August 14, 2019]: The Vivo Y15 is the first from the trio to begin selling in Kenya priced at Kshs 21,999. There’s more to this story here. The original post continues below.
We know that smartphone vendor Vivo, the fifth in the world, is now in Kenya. Although Vivo Kenya hasn’t confirmed the official availability of smartphones for purchase, we already speculated about two of the phones we expect to see when the company sets up shop.
Vivo Kenya has been teasing the Vivo Y12 and Vivo Y15 without any specifics. But in a statement, the company has now made it official that the superior Vivo Y17 will accompany these two when sales begin in Kenya, Nigeria, Egypt, and the Middle East “in the coming months.”
Given how price-sensitive the African market is, it makes sense that Vivo is opting for its affordable range of devices as it begins life around here. All three phones come with premium-like designs, attractive photography features like AI triple cameras, and great performance specs.
“Since our first entry into international markets in 2014, we have been dedicated to understanding the needs of consumers through in-depth research in an effort to bring innovative products and services to meet changing lifestyle needs,” said Spark Ni, Vivo’s senior VP in a statement.
“The Middle East and Africa markets are important to us, and we will tailor our approach with consumers’ needs in mind. The launch of the Y series is just the beginning. We look forward to bringing our other widely popular products beyond Y series to consumers in the Middle East and Africa very soon,” the VP added.
Vivo comes into a market dominated by another Chinese smartphone vendor, Transsion Holdings, the owner of Infinix, Tecno and iTel brands. The company has a market share of 34.3% followed by Samsung and Huawei at 22.6% and 9.9%, at least according to stats from the year ending 2018. The IDC has also reported recently that Africa, for the first time since 2015, recorded positive growth in smartphone intake despite a global slowdown.
Perhaps it’s the perfect timing for Vivo to grab a share of the bulging African smartphone market. But with affordability a major factor in Kenya and Africa in general, it’ll be interesting to see how the company values the Vivo Y12, Y15, and Y17 when they begin selling, probably this August 2019.