Lockdown Impact: 40 million Indians may be without mobile phones by May end, says ICEA

In India, approximately 40 million mobile users are likely to be without handsets owing to faults and breakdowns by the end of May if restrictions continue, the apex industry body of mobile and electronics industry ICEA said.

Currently, due to non-availability of components in the supply chain, around 2.5 crore customers are predicted to be with non-functional devices.

Notably, the Indian government has permitted sales of only essential goods and services.

“A very large proportion of these purchases are replacements. In addition, even with a much-improved quality of phones and mobile devices, there is an approx 0.25% break down on a monthly basis. With the current mobile base at nearly 85 crore, it is clear that nearly 2.5 crore individuals are suffering due to non-availability of new devices or repair of their existing devices,” India Cellular and Electronics Association (ICEA) said.

“It is critical that mobile device sales via online, and in a phased manner via retail, as well as service centres with facilities for home delivery and pickup must be declared as “essential services”, in addition to grocery and medicines,” ICEA Chairman Pankaj Mohindroo said.

India’s share in the worldwide smartphone production is set to fall due to the lockdown, according to experts.

According to CyberMedia Research, the India feature phone market is likely to witness around 30% decline in unit shipments in the first half of this year thanks to the uncertainties around the COVID-19 pandemic.

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