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    Expected rise in worldwide smartphone sales for the year 2020

    Worldwide sales of smartphone to end users are on track to reach 1.57 billion units in 2020, an increase of 3% year over year, according to Gartner, Inc. In 2019, worldwide smartphone sales declined 2%, the first time since 2008 that the global smartphone market experienced a decline.

    “2019 was a challenging year for smartphone vendors, primarily due to oversupply in the high-end sector in mature markets and longer replacement cycles overall,” said Annette Zimmermann, research vice president at Gartner. “However, in 2020, the market is expected to rebound with the introduction of 5G network coverage in more countries and as users who may have delayed their smartphone purchases until 2020 in expectation of price reductions begin buying again.”

    Gartner forecasts that sales of 5G mobile phones will total 221 million units in 2020 — which will account for 12% of overall mobile phone sales — and more than double in 2021, to 489 million units. “The commercialization of 5G phones will accelerate in 2020. 5G phones costing under $300 have been announced, so sales growth of 5G phones is expected to exceed that of 4G phones over twelve months,” said Ms. Zimmermann.

    From a regional perspective, the Middle East and North Africa, mature Asia/Pacific and Greater China (China, Taiwan and Hong Kong) will exhibit the highest growth rates in 2020, at 5.9%, 5.7% and 5.1%, respectively (see Table 1).

    Table 1:
    Worldwide Smartphone Sales to End Users by Region, 2019-2021 (Thousands of Units)

    Region 2019 2020 2021 
    Eastern Europe 48,468 48,532 49,121
    Emerging Asia/Pacific 363,643 376,784 396,394
    Eurasia 48,612 50,915 52,860
    Greater China 411,351 432,328 426,002
    Japan 31,866 32,273 33,027
    Latin America 129,830 125,635 122,963
    Mature Asia/Pacific 30,095 31,802 31,234
    Middle East and North Africa 73,872 78,226 75,604
    North America 152,857 155,350 158,618
    Sub-Saharan Africa 90,103 91,917 93,169
    Western Europe 144,141 147,457 150,206
    Total 1,524,838 1,571,219 1,589,198

    Strong demand for 5G phones in general, together with expectations of Apple’s first 5G iPhone, will bolster demand for smartphones, particularly in Asia/Pacific and Greater China. In terms of smartphone sales, Greater China and emerging Asia/Pacific will maintain their No. 1 and No. 2 positions globally in 2020, with respective sales of 432.3 million and 376.8 million smartphones.

     “Smartphone sales will register growth in 2020 as the demand for mid-price smartphones rises in India,” said Anshul Gupta, senior research director at Gartner. “Premium features including improved camera, display at affordable price will remain key for growth in the Indian smartphone market in 2020.”

     What to Expect at MWC 2020

    “Attention at this year’s MWC will be drawn to 5G devices at either end of the price scale, some of which may be revealed before the event,” said Ms. Zimmermann. “The key focus for vendors will be access to 5G and enhancement of the camera technology within devices.”

    For more information, visit

    ELE Times Research Desk
    ELE Times Research Desk
    ELE Times provides a comprehensive global coverage of Electronics, Technology and the Market. In addition to providing in depth articles, ELE Times attracts the industry’s largest, qualified and highly engaged audiences, who appreciate our timely, relevant content and popular formats. ELE Times helps you build awareness, drive traffic, communicate your offerings to right audience, generate leads and sell your products better.

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