Smartphones "reaching saturation point"

(Image credit: Image Credit: Supparsorn / Shutterstock)

Whoever wanted to buy a smartphone in the developed world has already done so, and manufacturers are now faced with challenges on how to convince consumers to upgrade. This is one of the conclusions of GSMA Intelligence’s new report, ‘The Future of Devices’. The report is based on a poll of 36,000 people in 34 different markets.

It says that manufacturers are looking at 5G as the possible new driver for upgrades, but people will need convincing.

“While smartphones remain the dominant consumer technology, device vendors and operators are looking to 5G to unlock a new chapter in the smartphone growth story – even though our research suggests there is still work to do to convince consumers of the benefits of the move to 5G,” said Peter Jarich, Head of GSMA Intelligence.

Looking at concrete figures, it was said that almost nine in ten consumers in the developed world own a smartphone. That’s roughly 2.5 smartphones per household.

Households also have plenty of connected devices – six on average. And while smart speakers have seen an explosion in the past 12 months, VR devices haven’t lived up to the hype yet. Just six per cent of households have one of these devices, nowadays.

Consumers expect 5G to bring faster network speed, with a quarter expecting ‘innovative new services’. It remained unknown if people are actually willing to pay premium for 5G, though.

Image Credit: Supparsorn / Shutterstock