According to the latest report, the number of smartphone users in Pakistan is increasing rapidly. With the introduction of the fastest 3G and 4G-LTE services in Pakistan, the use of mobile broadband is growing. By the end of 2016, there will be more than 40 million smartphone users in the country.
Currently, there are 27 million Internet users who are enjoying the third-generation (3G) and fourth-generation (4G) mobile communication services in Pakistan. This number is increasing. Moreover, the mobile subscribers are now 133.4 million, according to the latest data from the PTA.
Based on current trends in e-commerce sector and as per market estimates, more than two million users a month visit the online shopping stores to purchase a cell phone.
To gain the advantage from this ever-increasing demand, the major industry players from telecom operators to mobile phone manufacturers and an e-commerce platform have joined hands with the internet giant Google to promote online trade by giving exclusive discounts on phone purchases just ahead of the event of Eid.
The publicly available data shows mobile phone imports regarding the value and not in units making it tough to figure out category wise imports.
According to the market experts, less than 20 percent of the mobile phones imported in Pakistan are the smartphones. But, in the next couple of years, this figure is likely to change.
Smartphone – the top-selling category across all the leading e-commerce platforms
In almost all the online shopping stores in Pakistan, the category of the smartphone is on the top.
It is important to mention here that the online shopping in Pakistan is still at its very early stage. Most of the people in Pakistan do not accept this method of shopping. Presently, the e-commerce represents only 5 % of conventional retail trade.
However, the overall size of this fast growing segment has come close to 100 million from 60 million as of 2014. The online shopping is not common in the rural areas of Pakistan. Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, and Rawalpindi are the major cities from where most of the people make e-commerce transactions. The remaining customer base is very thinly split between cities and towns nationwide.
With telecom operators rolling out 3G and 4G services in suburban and rural areas of the country which usually do not have outlets for branded products, the e-commerce market is likely to benefit a great deal.