According to the latest estimates from global technology and consulting services business International Data Corporation, Nigeria’s smartphone market rose 2% in unit terms quarter on quarter (QoQ) in Q2 2021. (IDC).
However, according to the company’s Quarterly Global Mobile Phone Tracker, feature phone shipments into the country fell by 6.4 per cent over the same time period. In Q2 2021, feature phones accounted for 51.8 per cent of total market shipments, with smartphones accounting for the remaining 48.2 per cent.
Vendors launching numerous new models, boosting their marketing spending, and moving their product portfolios towards entry-level and mid-range smartphones fueled the smartphone market’s rise in Q2 2021.
With 76.9% unit share in Q2 2021, Transsion’s Tecno, Itel, and Infinix brands led the country’s smartphone industry. Samsung came in second with a 10% market share, followed by Nokia and Xiaomi with 3.7 and 2.9 per cent market shares, respectively.
Despite the fact that many customers prefer physical stores, smartphone sales through online channels increased 7.8% during the same time as e-tailers in the country enhanced their delivery capabilities, made secure payments easier, and benefited from increased consumer confidence. In Q1 2021, smartphone sales through offline retail channels increased by 1.7 per cent year over year.
Feature phones remain the favoured secondary device in the Nigerian market, owing to the country’s poor infrastructure development and frequent power outages. Tecno, with 45.8% unit share, Itel (35.1%), and Nokia were the top three feature phone manufacturers in Q2 2021. (12.7 per cent).
Shipments of feature phones have decreased as ultra-low-end smartphones in the less than $100 price range have become increasingly appealing to consumers due to their affordability. As a result of more consumers desiring Internet connectivity, the move from feature phones to smartphones is also speeding up.
“With diminished consumer purchasing power due to the ramifications of the COVID-19 pandemic, the entry-level less than $200 category of the smartphone market continues to lead the way in Q2 2021 with 86.7 per cent unit share,” stated George Mbuthia, an IDC Research Analyst.
The affordability of these models, together with improvements in core features such as larger storage, better battery life, and bigger screen sizes, led to an increase in sales during the quarter.
By releasing new models into this lucrative market category, Transsion and Samsung were particularly effective in grabbing larger market share.
Nigeria’s overall mobile phone market is expected to shrink 7.0 per cent year over year in Q3 2021, with feature phone shipments down 6.0 per cent and smartphone shipments falling 8.0 per cent, according to IDC.
This is due to massive stocks resulting from high volumes of exports in the first half of the year, as well as the fact that borders remain closed, making cross-border trade difficult.
“The global chip shortage will disrupt the market, though the size of its impact is yet unknown,” said Dr Ramazan Yavuz, a Senior Research Manager at IDC.
“Despite the anticipated negative impact of the chip shortage, the Nigerian market will rebound somewhat in Q4 2021, with demand spurred by Black Friday and the festive period in November and December”.