Frontline Marketing

Newzoo: Smartphone Users Will Reach 3.6 Billion By 2020

Smartphone user playing Candy Crush Game App

By | April 26, 2017 |

Smartphone usage continues to grow, Samsung is leading the pack and consumers will spend a whole lot of money on games in 2017.

There were 2.8 billion smartphones in use last year, according to Newzoo’s latest report, and that number will climb to 3.6 billion by 2020. The Global Mobile Market Report forecasts 2.6 billion people in the world with a smartphone in 2017, with China and India alone accounting for more than one billion users. Not surprisingly, China has the most smartphone users, with 717 million consumers actively using a smartphone in 2017, followed by India, the US, Brazil and Russia, according to Newzoo’s findings.

India, which surpassed the US for smartphone users last year, will grow to 300 million smartphone users by the end of 2017, while the number in the US will only grow to 226 million. The world’s highest smartphone penetration can be found in the Middle East, where more than 75 percent of the population has a smartphone in countries such as Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Kuwait.

Healthy App-etite

Loading a smartphone up with apps is most of the fun, and consumers will spend a total of $56.4 billion this year doing just that— with games accounting for 82 percent. Total revenues from non-gaming categories are poised to increase from $10.2 billion in 2017 to $20.0 billion in 2020. As the number of smartphone users increases, so will global app store revenues, which are poised to grow to $85.0 billion in 2020. While more mature markets of North America and Europe will continue to grow at a lower but stable rate, most of this predicted growth will come from Asia-Pacific, the Middle East and Africa.

Asia-Pacific accounts for 56 percent of app store revenues this year, bringing in $31.8 billion. China is the biggest single market within Asia-Pacific, generating $16.4 billion in consumer spend on apps (including third-party app stores). North America and Europe are considerably smaller in terms of revenues, with $10.6 billion and $8.5 billion in revenues, respectively.

Device And Conquer

With a market share of 31 percent, Samsung was the global leader for smartphones in 2016, just ahead of Apple which held a 25 percent share. However, Apple was the world’s leading tablet brand with a market share of almost 64 percent, or 166 million active tablets at the end of 2016. The Apple iPad Air and Air 2 were the most popular tablet devices, accounting for almost one in five active tablets globally.

When it comes to manufacturers, these two brands don’t leave much room for competitors. Together, Apple and Samsung accounted for almost 90 percent of the global tablet market.