Chargers, batteries, headsets, memory cards, and speakers are just a few of the items that make up a mobile handset accessories segment that is poised for steady growth, with strong margin contributions. ABI Research, a market-foresight advisory firm providing strategic guidance on the most compelling transformative technologies, forecasts global revenues of aftermarket mobile accessories to near US$89 billion in 2022. In fact, aftermarket Bluetooth headsets for smartphones will grow at the fastest rate in terms of both revenue and shipments, with the latter expected to show a 7% CAGR between 2017 and 2022, rising to nearly 563 million in 2022.
“Aftermarket Bluetooth stereo headset shipments and revenues are experiencing steady growth due to the increasing number of companies offering the devices (such as Apple with its AirPods) to give consumers a wireless experience,” says Stephanie Lawrence, Research Analyst at ABI Research. “Some of this increase has been driven by Apple replacing the 3.5mm jack in its iPhones with the Lightning connector, and this will be bolstered further as other vendors move toward excluding the jack in high-end devices in favor of using USB Type C for audio. Since headsets are not yet provided in-box with these types of connectors, users will have to rely on adaptors or Bluetooth headsets.”
Chargers, memory cards, speakers, protective cases, and scratch protectors also contribute to steady growth in the aftermarket mobile accessories segment. For example, with devices having higher functionality, the battery drain is increased, requiring users to purchase different types of chargers to be able to use their devices longer. There is also a concerted move in the industry toward the integration of wireless charging in smartphones, opening the opportunity for more related accessories. Again, this has most recently been driven by Apple adding wireless charging to its latest iPhone launches, and a host of other vendors who also have the feature in their portfolio. As the trend toward having just one connector for both charging and listening to music increases, the need for users to either wirelessly charge or listen to music becomes a more fundamental requirement. This has the knock-on effect of increasing the demand for these associated wireless accessories. In addition, phones are also becoming more valuable with larger screens, causing a greater number of users to look to protecting them with cases and screen protectors.
“Accessories are going to continue to be an important factor within the mobile device market, with shipments in general set to see a continuous, steady increase owing to many of the trends outlined above,” concludes Lawrence. “These accessories offer consumers the ability to enhance the experience and customize their devices, for example, allowing them to wirelessly listen to music or charge the device.”
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