Approximately 70% of the global population will use smartphones by 2020. This is according to a report released by Swedish Telecommunications equipment maker Ericsson in its annual mobility report. The report reveals that the number of mobile subscriptions will double to 6.1 Billion subscribers globally, of those 80% will come from Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa. In the first quarter of 2015, Mobile subscriptions stood at 910 million. The reports also expects mobile broadband networks coverage to grow to 90%.
According to Rima Qureshi, Senior Vice President, Chief Strategy Officer, Ericsson, the growth in mobile technology and data usage will lead to a massive data revolution. “Driven by a surge in mobile connectivity and smartphone uptake, will makes today’s big data revolution feel like the arrival of a floppy disk”. “This also requires greater focus on cost efficient delivery and openness to new business models to compete and remain effective”, he added.
A report published last week by online retailer Jumia noted that 1.8 million devices sold in 2015 in Kenya so far were smartphones. This represents 58% of devices sold which in effect represents 112% growth in this segment. The Kenyan market has also witnessed a tremendous growth in the number of smartphone vendors to 22 from 15 a few years ago. In addition, smartphones priced under $100 dollars experienced an increase in market share to 20% from 5% in 2013. Currently, Nokia, Samsung and Tecno control 75% of the Kenyan smartphone market with brands such as Infinix, Innjoo and Wiko beginning to gain traction in the lower and mid-range device market. Last week, we pointed to a report by Google Consumer Barometer where 83% of Smartphone owners In Kenya are using them to check the time, 78% for music, 71% to set an alarm while 69% use them to take photos.