Opinion: Soon we will stop buying new smartphones. Why?

How often do you go to an electronics store orordering a new smartphone on the Internet? Surely once a year or two (and even more often, if the financial situation allows). Therefore, manufacturers of smartphones make serious updates of their devices once every two years - they cannot completely abandon the release of new models for a year, so they release “intermediate” devices. But how long will it last?

What is diffusion of innovation

In 1983, sociologist Everett Rogers suggestedits own model of the description of the “diffusion of innovations” - the process of distribution of new technologies among a wide range of consumers. In his study, Rogers used the S-shaped diffusion curve of innovation, which shows the dependence of the distribution of a product on the buyer's individual predisposition to the perception of innovation. For this, the scientist identified five consumer groups: innovators, early followers, the earlier majority, the later majority, and the late.

The idea is that due to the differentcontacts between consumers the distribution of the product as quickly as possible. First, a group of innovators (2.5% of the population) begins to promote this or that technology, connecting to the process of early followers (13.5%). After some time, innovation is recognized by the early majority (34%) and later by the majority (34%). In the end, the so-called latecomers (in other words, conservatives, 16% of the population), also change their attitude to the new product and begin to use it.

What will happen to the smartphone market

If you compare the model of Rogers with modernthe smartphone market, you can make an important discovery. Surprisingly, the mobile phone market is not only fully compliant with the scheme proposed in 1983, but is still at the stage of introduction to the “conservatives” group. In the US, the degree of distribution of smartphones is already above 80%, a similar situation is observed in the five largest European smartphone markets.

In case consumers will adapt withAt the same rate, in 2020, the smartphone market will face a slowdown in the growth of the spread of new technologies due to the reduction of the very “late” ones. And by 2025 there will be a glut of the market or a 100 percent distribution of smartphones.

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As for the distribution of individual platforms,here it is still more interesting. The undisputed leaders at the moment are iOS and Android, while Microsoft and Nokia are among the outsiders. Experts can still predict the situation on the smartphone market, but they cannot predict the behavior of a technology corporation. Modern IT giants have become too unpredictable.

Nobody will buy new phones?

By comparing current data with the Rogers model, it is possible to trace how the announcement of a product affects the overall level of consumer adaptation.

You probably yourself noticed that before buyingA new phone gave a certain wow effect, you experienced other emotions. Currently, manufacturers of maximum change the number of megapixels and the name of the processor, but there is no such as with push-button phones: another form, keyboard, and so on. Hence the lack of interest and emotion, and there is simply no feeling that this is something new.

The owner of the media group, Mikhail Korolev, agrees with this:

Often people just say “I have an iPhone” and that's it. I had an iPhone XS, and now I use the iPhone 7, and somehow I don’t feel much of a difference. Yes, photos in the dark are worse, but no more. It is better to go on a trip to the difference in price.

What will happen after a glut in the market? I believe, smartphone makers will no longer entice customers of their competitors, but will focus on their own consumers. And, perhaps, we will stop chasing trends and update our smartphones much less often (what do you think? Tell us in our Telegram chat). The same Apple is already working on this tactic, and it brings good results to the company.