One in four cellphones sold in 2020 were bought online

Posted:
in iPhone edited June 2021
New research says that the coronavirus prompted online orders of smartphones to increase to 26% of phone sales worldwide.

Apple's iPhone 12
Apple's iPhone 12


Prompted by COVID-19, the number of cellphones bought online instead of in-store increased during 2020. On average, 26% of all phone handset sales were online, with the US seeing 24%, while the UK saw 39%, and 45% of India's phones were ordered online.

According to Counterpoint Research, the worldwide trend meant that "online handset sales in 2020 increased by nearly 6%" compared to 2019.

"This trend was strong not only in advanced markets such as the US and Europe but also in emerging markets such as India and Latin America," says Counterpoint's report. "In China, where the spread of COVID-19 first occurred, it peaked in the first half and softened slightly in the second half, while the US and India recorded the highest ever online share in the second half of 2020."

"After the rapid growth in 2020, we expect 2021 to see some easing after the COVID-19 vaccination," says senior analyst Sujeong Lim. "However, it is expected to grow slightly every year from 2022 onwards, supported by growth in emerging markets and the middle-aged population becoming more accustomed to IT devices and internet use."

Separately, Counterpoint Research recently reported that the iPhone 12 active user base grew faster than that of the iPhone 11, despite it having gone on sale later in the year than usual.

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 8
    dk49dk49 Posts: 265member
    Why is this news? 
    edited June 2021 GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 2 of 8
    fred1fred1 Posts: 1,105member
    As compared to what? What was the percentage in previous years. 

    Also, “According to Counterpoint Research, the worldwide trend meant that "online handset sales in 2020 increased by nearly 6%" compared to 2019.”
    This is claiming that the increase in buying online instead of in person caused an increase in overall sales. Is this really true?
  • Reply 3 of 8
    saareksaarek Posts: 1,520member
    I’m amazed that so many even visit physical stores to place an order.

    I can understand picking up a phone from the Apple Store or something to get it day one, or if your phone has just broken and you can't wait 2-3 days for a new contract/purchase to arrive from an online order. But whatever other reason could you have to visist a store, stand in a queue and get a worse deal than had you just gone online and saved all that hassle?

    Just makes no sense.
    edited June 2021
  • Reply 4 of 8
    crowleycrowley Posts: 10,453member
    Is that all?  Surprised it's so low tbh, especially in 2020.
  • Reply 5 of 8
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    It was literally hard to get into an Apple Store in 2020.  You had to make an appointment.

    Much easier to order it online and pick it up curbside or have it delivered.

    But, we will likely see even more online as Apple opens to third party vendors:   Apple never reduces their price but places like Amazon reduce prices as the model ages:  I just ordered a set of AirPod Pros for a friend -- Amazon was $50 less than picking them up at the Apple Store (even less today on Prime Day).

    I see Apple Stores increasingly filling the roles of:
    -- Support and Service
    -- A place for people to browse before making a decision
    -- And, hopefully returning soon:  education
    edited June 2021
  • Reply 6 of 8
    MacProMacPro Posts: 19,697member
    I'm assuming the point of the article is that it is amazing it isn't higher.  It's like other weird information from 2020 like car accidents were higher or carbon dioxide levels didn't fall.


  • Reply 7 of 8
    AppleishAppleish Posts: 681member
    Wow! I haven't bought an iPhone in person for ten years. I pre-order them each year and receive them on launch day. It was fun to stand in line for the first few years, but Apple Stores got less personable and pleasant. 
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 8 of 8
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    Appleish said:
    Wow! I haven't bought an iPhone in person for ten years. I pre-order them each year and receive them on launch day. It was fun to stand in line for the first few years, but Apple Stores got less personable and pleasant. 

    Yeh, I miss those days...
    But it wasn't just Apple that got less pleasant (actually, my experience was that they simply stopped encouraging it and acting as hosts to a party) but the people:   We got more people in line buying in order to resell the phones they got.   They were mostly low-lifes instead of Apple loyalists.
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