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Phone makers roll out affordable devices to tap into N1.2trn smart phone market

By on February 24, 2013

Nigerians will spend about N1.2 trillion purchasing smart phones between now and 2015, BusinessDay can now reveal. In view of this immense market opportunity, industry analysts told BusinessDay, yesterday that the country’s smart phone industry is witnessing heated competition, as foreign phone makers are rolling out affordable smart phones with very high functionality in order to reach even the bottom of the pyramid consumers.

The targeted consumers who have long been restricted by cost of device acquisition will be expected to dump their low-end devices and purchase smart phones, say industry analysts.

Reports have it that Nigerians will likely spend about N1.2 trillion for the purchase of smart phones between now and 2015.

“There is a shift in the focus of Nigerian consumers from phones with basic functionality to smart phones. The change in demand has caused a huge increase in sales of smart phones in Nigeria, with an expected increase in sales to about 35 percent by 2015, which means that about 30million smart phones will be sold in Nigeria within the period,” Tony Liang, managing director, Huawei West Africa, Chinese phone maker was quoted in a recent industry report.

Analysts say that the average cost of a smart phone is about N40,000, with high-end ones going for as much as N100, 000.  If market expectations are that 30 million smart phones will be sold in Nigeria between now and 2015, this would imply that a sum of N1.2 trillion will be spent on buying smart phones over the said period.

Industry analysts say other phone makers are conscious of this huge revenue potential.

This huge market opportunity, according to them has already sparked-off intense battles for market share, with Blackberry, Samung Electronics, Nokia Corporation, LG, all rolling out cost-effective, high-functionality smart phone in the past six months.

At the weekend, Samsung Electronics West Africa (SEWA) introduced a N65, 000 smart phone (one of the cheapest phones in the Galaxy high-end range) dubbed, ‘Galaxy Grand’.

Bravo Kim, managing director, SEWA told BusinessDay at the launch ceremony that the new device would ensure the Korean firm maintained its dominance in the global smart phone industry and in Nigeria. This, according to him is even as the phone maker seeks to meet the demands of consumers desirous of optimising the value that they derive from their mobile devices.

Onome Okwah, communications manager for Resourcery Plc told BusinessDay in a phone interview on Wednesday that there is a heated battle amongst foreign phone makers to capture as much market share as possible. “You know, Blackberry has held sway in the market with over 2million active devices on telecoms networks and other phone manufacturers are  trying to knock them off.


[Business Day]