We are used to Samsung, iPhone, LG, Philips, Sony, etc. as the household names for electronic brands. These brands usually have higher price tags and are obviously very well known internationally. We buy from them because we feel that they offer durable and reliable products though sometimes we buy to them simply because of their brand name.
These well-known brands are favorite to copy by the counterfeiters because they can simply ride along with the marketing effort of these brands. However, now that we are at the age of e-commerce new brands are sprouting. These unknown brands are offering affordable price tags with the same functionality, experience, and sometimes the looks of the known brands (this is the gray area).
Actually, the items I bought now like the mobile phone for my brother and mother, the TV that I have now, and my not so recent purchase: the air fryer is from an unknown brand. When I was looking for a phone for my mother and brother I did some research as I was eyeing for these brands called RealMe and Poco (though right now they are somewhat known). Back then while they are not yet known most people are not considering them the spotlight is on Samsung, LG, Apple’s iPhone, or Sony. However, they let me realize that the known brands that we know get some of their product components to OEMs or Original Equipment Manufacturers and White Label Manufacture Plants.
Original Equipment Manufacturer
So what is an Original Equipment Manufacturer? according to Investopedia OEM are companies whose goods are used as components in the products of other companies, which then sells the finished item to users. Obviously, this strategy has been here a long time ago but back then access to them is kind of exclusive.
Famous OEMs are the Corning Gorilla glass, the chipset brands like Qualcomm, HiSilicon Kirin, and MediaTek, and even Sony, and right now Samsung too are OEMs. They create this specific product or component for other companies and even for their own competitors to use.
White Label Manufacturers
White Label manufacturers are companies who assemble and create the product their clients ask them to create. Sometimes they already have the designs available and sometimes the client will provide them. That is why if you notice especially phones they are almost identical. They are sometimes called or part of the VAR or Value Added Resellers because they augment and/or incorporate features or services and adds value to the original item. They work closely with the OEMs (Investopedia).
In this e-commerce era anyone with capital not necessarily a huge one can have their own brand, thanks to these white-label manufacturers. Some examples of these are makeup or cosmetics, clothes, appliances, and of course electronic gadgets. That is why a lot of unknown brands now are sprouting because of this access.
Are they worth buying?
These unknown brands today may become a huge ones in the future especially if they continue to strive for good quality, accessibility, and customer support. Their current model lowers their price which also helps lower the price of the known brands. Samsung for example is releasing models (heir A series) that compete with the Chinese brands.
There is still a risk because not all new/unknown brands have the vision to grow. But this is my tip and this may not be 100% accurate so still take this with a grain of salt. In the sea of unknown brands offering almost identical products look for a brand that strives to be unique, to grow, and collaborate with other brands that already had a strong market. Because this brand is serious in their business, they are serious to expand and not just jumping into the opportunity and gone when the fire is out.