Last year, worldwide sales of 'aftermarket' mobile phone accessories – items that aren't included with the handset – generated revenue of $26.5 billion. ABI Research now reckons that figure will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 11.4% to exceed $50 billion in 2015.
Michael Morgan, senior analyst at ABI Research, said "Market growth in the aftermarket accessories segment is being driven by the explosive growth in smartphone sales. Smartphones are generally higher-value products than feature phones, so consumers are willing to spend more on the accessories for them. There is also a shift to higher-quality accessories, replacing the cheap, white-label products that characterized the market until recently."
The most popular accessories include cases for smartphones; over 70% of them have aftermarket cases. Memory cards remain popular, although falling wholesale prices have led to manufacturers including higher-capacity cards with devices. As a result, the growth rate in card sales has reduced.