Worldwide smartphone sales to slow in 2016Staff writer ▼ | June 9, 2016
Gartner said global smartphone sales will continue to slow and will no longer grow in double digits.
Technology The focus for many vendors is on India and China
Today, the smartphone market has reached 90 percent penetration in the mature markets of North America, Western Europe, Japan and Mature Asia/Pacific, slowing future growth.
Furthermore, users in these regions are not replacing or upgrading their smartphone as often as in previous years.
Communications service providers (CSPs) have moved away from subsidies providing a "free" smartphone every two years, which has led to more varied upgrade cycles.
On the other hand, CSPs have introduced financing programs and vendors such as Apple now offer upgrade programs that provides users with new hardware after only 12 months.
Since mature markets are saturated, the focus for many vendors is on India and China. Smartphones are expensive for users in India, but with the average selling prices (ASPs) of low-end models falling, Gartner estimates that 139 million smartphones will be sold in India in 2016, growing 29.5 percent year over year.
ASPs of mobile phones in India remain under $70, and smartphones under $120 will continue to contribute around 50 percent of overall smartphone sales in 2016.
After recording growth of 16 percent in 2014, sales of smartphones in China were flat in 2015.
Gartner forecasts that by 2018, at least one nontraditional phone maker will be among the top five smartphone brands in China. ■