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Smartphone sales rates continue to skyrocket

November 14, 2013

Smartphones are the fastest selling kind of cell phone device on the market today - great news for retailers that rely on online sales and mobile credit card processing pages for a significant amount of their sales.

Smartphones are the fastest selling kind of cell phone device on the market today – great news for retailers that rely on online sales and mobile credit card processing pages for a significant amount of their sales. 

Gartner recently reported that worldwide mobile phone sales increased 5.7 percent during the third quarter of 2013 when compared to the same period in 2012 – representing a total of more than 455 million units sold. Smartphone devices accounted for roughly 55 percent of those sales, representing their highest such market share to date. Worldwide smartphone sales reached 250 million units during the quarter, illustrating a 45.8 percent increase.

“Sales of feature phones continued to decline and the decrease was more pronounced in markets where the average selling price (ASP) for feature phones was much closer to the ASP affordable smartphones,” said Anshul Gupta, principal research analyst at Gartner. “In markets such as China and Latin America, demand for feature phones fell significantly as users rushed to replace their old models with smartphones.”

Analysts from Gartner predicted that global mobile phone sales will reach more than 1.8 billion units during 2013, which would represent a 3.4 percent increase when compared with figures from 2012. Gupta suggested that the influx of new tablet and smartphone devices was helping to spur sales forward. For example, Apple’s smartphone sales were reported as reaching 30.3 million units during the quarter, up more than 23 percent from last year’s figures. 

“While the arrival of the new iPhones 5s and 5c had a positive impact on overall sales, such impact could have been greater had they not started shipping late in the quarter,” said Gupta. “While we saw some inventory built up for the iPhone 5c, there was good demand for iPhone 5s with stock out in many markets.”

Google aims to analyze smartphone location data to help retailers
Retailers can pair their branded mobile applications with mobile credit card processing equipment to help them profit from the proliferation of smartphones. However, one organization is trying to make even better use of smartphone data.

Digiday recently reported that Google plans to analyze location data provided by smartphones to allow them to better support retailers. For example, a hardware store could theoretically bid to have its store provided to any shoppers who make mobile searches for the word “screwdriver” while within a certain proximity of the aforementioned location.

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