According to a nationwide survey, Malaysians bought around RM6.8 billion worth of smartphones in 2016
The survey was conducted by Germany's largest market research organisation, GfK.
The organisation is also the fourth largest market research organisation in the world. It currently has over 13,000 researchers around the globe.
The survey - which was done between March 2016 and Feb 2017 - showed a significant sales increase from RM5.4 billion in 2015, with the biggest spike contributed by mid-range model smartphones priced between RM900 to RM1,050
The company's Southeast Asia managing director Stanley Kee attributed the spike to the popularity of Chinese smartphones in the country.
"Chinese-brand smartphones were the key drivers to the spike in demand for mobile devices last year, which registered the highest number of new smartphone brands entering the marketplace.
"With the recent nationwide expansion in mobile connectivity, consumers in the country are increasingly using their smartphones for activities such as mobile shopping, social media and general surfing of the internet," he said as quoted by NST.
On top of that, the survey also noted that 31% of the smartphones sold in Malaysia last year had screen sizes ranging from 5.01 to 5.6 inches
Kee said shopping apps were also gaining popularity, paving the path for mobile payments.
“More consumers today are contributing to the growth of mobile commerce (m-commerce) in Malaysia, making payments through their mobile devices for retail items, airline tickets, and services such as Grab and Uber."
Mid-range smartphones are expected to dominate the Malaysian market
Most Malaysian respondents indicated price and brand image as key deciding factors in purchasing smartphones.
"Since Malaysian consumers are largely motivated by price, we believe the mid-range category of smartphones will continue to dominate the market this year," said Kee.
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