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Global handset sales will decline -17% annually in 2020

by Ken Hyers | May 13, 2020

Strategy Analytics predicts global legitimate mobile phone sales will decline -17% annually in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and global recessions. 

The Covid-19 pandemic and associated economic downturns caused by national lock-downs will significantly impact handset sales, including 5G handset sales, in 2020 and likely into 2021. While 5G handset sales will prove more resilient in certain regions, in particular Asia Pacific where China’s government is heavily promoting the technology, it will lag in other regions; this will be especially so in Western Europe.

However, global 5G handset sales will grow +1,000% in 2020, driven mainly by the Chinese market. LTE (4G) sales will decline this year as a result of growing interest towards 5G devices. While 5G will be the most impactful air interface technology driving handset sales in the 2020s, there will continue to be room for 4G, as a fall back for 5G networks, and for 2G technologies in emerging markets; 2G, 3G and 4G will, in particular, have strong sales in Africa.

Clients of Strategy Analytics' Device Technologies practice can access the report here.

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