Global smartphone market to contract again in 2018: IDC

San Francisco,  For the second year in a row, the worldwide smartphone market will contract again in 2018 before returning to growth in 2019 and beyond, due largely to rising demand of the product in India, according to research by the International Data Corporation (IDC).

Smartphone shipments are forecast to drop to 1.462 billion units in 2018 from 1.465 billion in 2017, showed the research based on IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker.

The global smartphone market is likely to grow roughly three per cent annually from 2019 onwards with worldwide shipment volume reaching 1.654 billion in 2022, IDC said.

The biggest driver of the 2017 downturn was China, which saw its smartphone market decline 4.9 per cent year over year.

In 2018, smartphone demands in China is likely to decline another 7.1 per cent before flattening out in 2019, according to the IDC forecast.

The biggest upside in Asia/Pacific continues to be India with volumes expected to grow 14 per cent and 16 per cent in 2018 and 2019, it said.

“The boom in India is likely to continue in the years to come, but the move toward building up local production has certainly caught the eye of many in the industry,” said Ryan Reith, Program Vice President with IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Device Trackers.

“Local India manufacturing continues to ramp up, despite still having a heavy dependence on China for components,” Reith said.

Outside of Asia/Pacific, the biggest regions for growth will be the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America, the report said.