2018 Predictions: Our Perspective director Jason kemp


Our Perspective director Jason kemp predicts the affordable device market to grow and speculates the Apple bubble may burst in 2018

Expect big changes in distribution with the likes of Eurostar, GreenTech and New Way all looking to shake up the sector with their speed and flexibility. How the establishment reacts will be interesting as many have become 3PL businesses in recent years rather than business development distributors.

I predicted last year that behind Samsung and Apple there would be a bloodbath between the likes of LG, Sony, HTC and ZTE with Huawei the winner. In fairness, Sony is making a ‘Rocky’ like comeback and I see that continuing in 2018 as they launch more great products.

I also said the affordable end of the market would grow and Alcatel continues to go from strength to strength with great phones at great prices. I expect Alcatel to reinforce third place in the market for volume in 2018.

Could the Apple bubble finally burst as their phone prices reach four figures? I think it might and even the new raft of financing and leasing options being rolled out across retail and distribution won’t be enough to stop Apple sales dropping.

Connected Home will finally take off thanks to everyone getting either an Amazon Echo or Google Home for Christmas. However, the margin in smart lighting, plugs and devices has already been eroded – so the challenge will be to make a profit for distributors and retailers!

Other growth sectors will include the kids market (as online protection becomes ever more important), the rugged sector (for phones and cases) as consumers demand durability from devices and also the seniors market (because the population isn’t getting any younger).

Finally, 2018 will be the year when we are teased with flexible screens, but they won’t make production until 2019.