Smart Buyers – China’s booming smartphone usage

Published on: July 1st, 2013
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China has broken a new global record in smartphone penetration and this will have dramatic effects on content and commerce in 2013 in the world’s most populous internet market: the number of Chinese netizens reached 591 million (June 2013). Mobile subscribers in China (1.176 billion) are now using 330 million smartphones which exceeds the total number of all 321 million mobile phones active in the US.  Predictions are that China will have 500 million smartphones in use by the end of 2013. The implications of such a dramatic flip from regular to smart phones are far-reaching and will ultimately affect the GDP growth rate in China. Those 500 million smartphone users are going to drive new patterns of online and offline commerce that will have global consequences. For more background information and insides, see the article that was published on CNN Money this January:

In daily life I already see this happening. Girls in the subway shopping fashion online from both Chinese as well as international fashion websites and ordering their groceries for delivery that same day; young men browsing the latest tech-wannahaves, which is just one click away from their credit card. Spending money is extremely easy this way. It will definitely have its effect also on the financial side. How will banks respond to this in terms of credit facilities is a very interesting topic to watch closely. The same for the retail landscaping. How will offline retail respond to all the online retailing? I have seen ZARA and H&M already responding to it in a very good way. They still have their flagship stores on prime locations, but with increasing online buyers, there open-mindedness about it and ever raising rents, they are eager to promote their online services. Chinese consumers respond very well to this. The future of online retailing is here!