The number of smartphones being used around the world is estimated to hit 6 billion by 2021, with expected revenue of $355 billion by the end of 2020. It’s official! Cell phones have replaced the PC as the most important connected device. And how could they not? We use them for pretty much everything nowadays. These devices have become almost an extension of who we are, connecting us to fiends, family, products, and more. So, what’s next for phones? Here are five more important things to know as we track the expansion of the smartphone market.

  1. Smartphones & Tablets Make Up More Than 60% of Connected Consumer Devices

According to research firm IHS Markit, smartphones and tablets became consumers’ top chosen smart devices, growing from 17% in 2008 to a whopping 60% just two years later. In 2016, the smartphone install base reached 4 billion—and that number is predicted to hit 6 billion as the market continues to intrigue consumers with evolving 5G technology, fresh business models, and emerging state-of-the-art devices.

  1. Global Consumer Spending On Mobile Will Reach $74 Billion by 2020

Consumers love the convenience of having app technology at their fingertips. Mobile app spending in 2016 lingered around the $54 billion mark and is projected to grow to $74 billion in 2020. The most popular apps are those that improve efficiency or make day-to-day operations a little simpler—especially mobile payments and money services. Asia is the world’s leading spender in the global app market and makes up more than half of all purchases, but fast-growing regions in Latin America, Africa, and the Middle East are catching up, and quickly.

  1. Payments and Messaging Will Dominate Use

While the number of smartphones operating device-based payment services grew significantly, messaging apps aren’t far behind. WhatsApp for instance, reported 5 billion+ consumers at the end of 2016 and is on track to reach or surpass 7.5 billion users in 2020. 

  1. Trade-In Programs are More Important Than Ever…

Consumers may want the latest and greatest, but having a proper trade-in program that makes it easy to upgrade to the newest model is key to the mobile industry’s earnings. When shoppers can easily offload their old smartphone, they’re more likely to pay top dollar for a new one. 

  1. …And That Goes Hand-In-Hand With A Healthy Secondary Market

The newer the technology, the more expensive it is. And while many shoppers prefer to own the newest smartphone, they’re not always able to afford it. In fact, today’s consumer has a hearty appetite for used and refurbished smartphones, especially as they come at a more palatable price. That’s why creating a competitive secondary market for used, returned, and refurbished smartphones is necessary. And, it provides retailers and manufacturers a way to clear older models off of shelves in order to make space for newer, more valuable products.

By working with B-Stock, mobile retailers can do exactly that. Our auction-style B2B marketplace connects sellers with a community of eager business buyers from around the world, providing a turnkey solution to selling used and overstock merchandise at top-dollar—all while maximizing recovery and velocity and maintaining complete control over how the smartphones enter the market. The world’s largest wireless manufacturers, carriers, and trade-in companies are currently leveraging B-Stock’s B2B marketplace platform for their trade-in and excess mobile devices and accessories. Across our network, more than 3 million phones and 5 million accessories are sold annually.

Want to learn more? Visit our mobile sourcing page for a look at our 10+ marketplaces dedicated to mobile inventory. And for more information on selling via our mobile marketplace platform, please download our Mobile Brochure

Learn how GameStop increased its buyer base and sales cycle for trade-in mobile phones. 

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