50% of Chinese Consumers Buy Smartphones Online

Oyster Bay, New York - 26 May 2016

According to a recent survey conducted for the China market by ABI Research, the leader in transformative technology innovation market intelligence, more than 50% of respondents report purchasing a mobile phone online. This is significantly higher than the roughly 36% of U.S. consumers doing the same.

“The Chinese mobile telecommunications market is largely prepaid, which means that Chinese consumers may not feel as chained to mobile service providers as do U.S. consumers,” says Marina Lu, Senior Analyst at ABI Research. “The same principle applies for contract subscriptions, as they involve SIM-only contract deals in China with no attachment to mobile phones.”

Also, many mobile operators in the region are reducing subsidies to smartphones and passing handset taxes, charged by the government, onto their subscribers. This further weakens subscribers’ ties to mobile carriers and encourages consumers to purchase mobile phones online.

Additionally, there are far less physical stores for big mobile device brands, like Apple, Samsung, and Huawei in China when compared to U.S. Apple, for instance, recently reached a new total of 32 stores in China, compared to the 268 stores it currently operates in the U.S. This may be helping to steer more of the region’s consumers to online outlets.

In fact, some Chinese local brands, including Huawei and Xiaomi, are capitalizing on this trend by selling some of their flagship devices primarily via online stores. Huawei Honor and Xiaomi’s MI series are good examples of this.

“Brick-and-mortar stores can be very useful, as they allow consumers to try out the latest products as they shop and, therefore, help increase sales,” concludes Lu. “As physical stores in China are limited, though, consumers may be discouraged by this process, due to large crowds and long lines during check out.”

These findings are part of ABI Research’s Mobile Device Accessories Service, which includes research reports, market data, insights, and competitive assessments.

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For more than 25 years, ABI Research has stood at the forefront of technology market intelligence, partnering with innovative business leaders to implement informed, transformative technology decisions. The company employs a global team of senior analysts to provide comprehensive research and consulting services through deep quantitative forecasts, qualitative analyses and teardown services. An industry pioneer, ABI Research is proactive in its approach, frequently uncovering ground-breaking business cycles ahead of the curve and publishing research 18 to 36 months in advance of other organizations. In all, the company covers more than 60 services, spanning 11 technology sectors. For more information, visit www.abiresearch.com.

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