NEW DELHI: Affordable 4G devices are helping drive India's smartphone market and encouraging a shift to mobile advertising with video ads proving especially effective.

Latest data from the International Data Corporation's (IDC) Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker show that 28.3m smartphones were shipped to India in the third quarter of 2015, up 21.4% on the same period a year earlier.

In particular, shipments of 4G-enabled devices grew three-fold over the second quarter as Chinese vendors attempted to capture market share and as e-commerce sites stocked up ahead of the festive season and its accompanying sales days.

But Korean manufacturer Samsung is currently the biggest 4G player in the country thanks to its popular sub $150 LTE models such as Galaxy Grand Prime and Galaxy J2.

Further, Jaipal Singh, market analyst/Client Devices at IDC, reported that around half of smartphones sold had five inch or bigger displays.

"This highlights the shift in consumer preference from a device mostly used for voice calling to an advanced multimedia experience," he said.

A separate report from Opera Mediaworks and the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) suggested that 75% of mobile ad impressions served in India are on smartphones and said the country now led the Asia Pacific P6 region in terms of mobile advertising revenue and traffic.

The Q3 State of Mobile Advertising study, reported in Gizmodo, looked at mobile users on Opera's mobile-ad platform in six APAC countries.

And, according to Vikas Gulati, managing director/Asia, Opera Mediaworks: "Video ad on smartphones is what is truly powering the monetization potential of the region."

He said such ads were effective at attracting, engaging and converting mobile consumers, adding that India leads in overall traffic, accounting for 53% of impressions.

The top three categories for ad impressions, he said, were mobile stores and carrier portals, social networking sites and apps, and sports.

* An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that 75% of mobile users have smartphones rather than that 75% of mobile ad impressions are on smartphones. It also said India led the Asia-Pacific region rather than the smaller group of P6 countries, which includes India, Indonesia, Vietnam, Philippines, Malaysia and Thailand.

Data sourced from IDC, Gizmodo; additional content by Warc staff