JAKARTA — After experiencing rapid growth over the past few years, the global smartphone market seems to be slowing down. The reason is, consumers are now no longer waiting for innovation changes and some large smartphone markets have reached saturation.
That is certainly bad news for the world technology giant. Just say, Apple Inc. has cut its sales forecast for the first time in two decades earlier this year. Meanwhile, pioneers in other smartphone industries, such as Samsung Electronics Co., are now starting to look for innovations such as screens that can be folded to offset weakening sales.
On the other hand, competitors from China such as Xiaomi, Oppo, Vivo, and Huawei also began expanding overseas due to reduced demand from within China.
The sales trend may have ended, but smartphones – one of the most popular consumer products ever introduced – remain a vital part of the global economy.
Meanwhile, sales of smart phones reached the level of US $ 458 billion in 2017 and until now there are still millions of people who do not have them.
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Looking back, Apple is actually not the creator of a smart phone. But, the company founded by Steve Jobs is confirmed to be the initial spreader of web-connecter devices in the modern era by launching iPhone products in 2007.
A year later, Android devices also appeared, whose sales immediately skyrocketed.
Based on IDC data, the number of smart phone shipments in 2013 also jumped 40% from the previous year. But, this rate grew to slow down in 2014 to 28%.
Next, the first contraction occurred in 2017 with the market shrinking to 2.5%, mostly due to reduced shipments in China.
“IDC estimates the market will continue to weaken in 2018, although only 0.2%, which is again due to reduced demand in China,” Bloomberg wrote as quoted by Bisnis.com, Tuesday (1/22/2019).
Furthermore, what actually drives the sales of smart phones in their glorious years?
Of course the factor that makes smart phones attractive is that the technology it carries has managed to attract the interest of the public globally (demographics).
When the iPhone product first entered the market, SMS text messages were replaced by wireless networks. Operators also developed several innovations, such as third generation technology, fourth generation, download features for websites, videos, applications, and other content, very quickly. So, there is a natural tendency for consumers to upgrade the technology.
Not only that, smart phone vendors also innovate more dramatic styles, such as embedding fingerprint technology, improving camera quality, beautifying the screen display, pairing digital assistants, and presenting a larger screen.
At the same time, increasing industrialization and increasing population incomes in countries like China and India also means more people want smart phones to connect to the internet.
But, the support is also a pressure factor for the sale of smart phones today. Because the smart phone devices now no longer have innovations that can encourage consumers to want to replace their smartphones within a year.
In addition, cellphones have now become more resilient because vendors offer more sustainable power and memory capacity.
If there is a cellphone that does not provide certain features, users can directly download through the application to get a camera filter and digital assistant.
Most importantly, the smart phone market itself has now reached a saturation point. Most people in China already have smart phones, or the same as people in the West.
Even though there are still loyal users waiting every year to buy the latest iPhone products, there are still more who prefer to be loyal to keep using the devices that they already have today. How about you?