India looks set to beat the United States as the world’s second biggest market for smartphones by 2016, according to research firm eMarketer.
In a report, eMarketer noted that the growing penetration of affordable smartphones in emerging markets will help worldwide smartphone users surpass the two billion mark by 2016.
“India will exceed 200 million smartphone users, topping the US as the world’s second largest smartphone market by 2016,” said eMarketer.
The report revealed that China would continue to top the rankings in 2016, with smartphone users within the country numbering 624.7 million. India will come in second, with 204.1 million smartphone users, followed by the US with 198.5 million. Completing the top five are Russia and Japan, with 65.1 million and 61.2 million smartphone users respectively.
In 2015, more than 25 per cent of the world’s population will use smartphones, while more than one-third of worldwide consumers will do so by 2018.
The research firm expects smartphone users to exceed two billion by 2016. In 2015, eMarketer expects to see more than 1.91 billion smartphone users worldwide, a figure that might increase by another 12.6 per cent to reach almost 2.16 billion by 2016.
In 2013, the number of active smartphone users across the world reached the one billion mark. China topped the list with 436.1 million smartphone users, followed by the US, India, Japan, and Russia.
“Inexpensive smartphones are opening new opportunities for marketing and commerce in emerging markets where many consumers previously had no access to the Internet,” said eMarketer.
However, smartphones in mature and established markets are shifting the paradigm for media usage as well as impressing the need for marketers to be more mobile-centric, it added.