Delayed availability of new handsets due to supply chain constraints and lower available cash due to the pandemic has pushed local demand for refurbished smartphones to new milestones. According to the CEO of Yantraa, refurbished smartphones in the price bracket of INR 4,000 to INR 6,000 were sold out in less than 30 minutes, suggesting the growing demand for second-hand phones in the market.
Overview of the used and refurbished smartphone market
Global Used and Refurbished Smartphone Market was valued at 251.09 Million Units in 2021, and it is projected to reach 459.86 Million Units by 2027, registering a CAGR of 10.23% between 2022 and 2027. Multiple product launches in the high-end smartphone segment, more brand options, new pricing and the overall ambitious value of an upgraded smartphone are some of the important factors that are rapidly pushing the used smartphone industry to grow its market in several geographies globally. An increase in the upgrade cost has been one of the major reasons for the growth of the market. An increase in the prices of high-end smartphones has led many consumers to keep their phones much longer than expected. However, at the same time, this factor has also increased the average selling price of a used device.
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Key Highlights of the Used and Refurbished Smartphone Market
- As e-waste is the fastest growing solid waste stream in the world, growing at a rate three times faster than general waste in a country like Australia, market sentiments have turned to the purchase of refurbished smartphones which have gained traction with several players such as Boost Mobile, Cole’s and Phoenix Cellular.
- In January 2022, Flipkart Group announced the acquisition of Yaantra, an e-commerce company, for an undisclosed amount as part of efforts to strengthen its re-commerce business and improve its aftermarket offerings of re-commerce for its customers in the smartphone segment.
- In November 2021, Meridiam invested €15 million in CertiDeal, a leading French circular economy digital platform selling in-house refurbished smartphones, tablets and other high-end devices in France.
Used and Refurbished Smartphone Market – Geographic Overview
- Growing advancements in smartphone features and growing reach of 5G smartphones are some of the major factors driving the growth of the used and refurbished smartphone market in North America. The United States is one of the most advanced markets for smartphone vendors in the world. The region has a history of developing innovative smartphones, especially with vendors, like Apple, which have changed the dynamics of the global smartphone market.
- According to the GSMA, North America will surpass 1 billion 5G connections by 2022 and 2 billion by 2025, thanks to continued carrier investment in networks and the growing range of 5G smartphones at varying prices. By 2025, North America will have become the first region where 5G will represent more than 50% of total connections.
- The refurbished smartphone market in the region has witnessed an increase in investment. For example, in May 2021, within three years of its launch in North America, Back Market, a marketplace dedicated to refurbished electronics, announced a $335 million investment round led by General Atlantic, with the support of Generation Investment Management and existing investors Aglaé Ventures, Goldman Sachs Growth Equity, Eurazeo and Daphni.
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Recent Developments in the Used and Refurbished Smartphone Market
- April 2022 – Samsung’s Renewed online store allows customers to own the previously purchased and refurbished Galaxy S21 series, added to the pre-owned lineup. The Renewed store offers lucrative deals on relatively recent Samsung devices. Users who couldn’t afford the S21 lineup due to high initial prices can now get their devices at a more affordable price. Samsung offers the product at 225 USD.
- March 2022 – iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro models have been introduced in the official Apple Certified Refurbished store. A new battery, new outer shell, genuine Apple part replacements (if needed), and a one-year warranty are included with products purchased from the Apple Certified Refurbished Store.
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List of Key Players in the Used and Refurbished Smartphone Market
- Samsung Electronics Co.Ltd
- Apple Inc.
- Amazon.com Inc.
- Verizon Communications Inc.
- AT&T Inc.
- Refurbished Limited
- NIPPON TELEPHONE INC.
- Best Buy Co. Inc.
- Woot Inc. (Amazon.com Inc.)
- Paytm (One97 Communications)
- Back Market
- Flipkart Internet Private Limited (Walmart Inc.)
Mordor Intelligence has segmented the used and refurbished smartphone market based on geography:
- Geography (Market Size & Forecast Based on Shipment (Million Units), 2020-2027)
- North America
- Asia Pacific
- Rest of the world
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