Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Pakistan is not a land of smart phones


Pakistan is one of those very few countries who faced Information technology revolution. Today Pakistan’s urban areas are fully equipped with state of the art technology. And every new technology that is being introduced worldwide hits Pakistan as well. Though Pakistan stand out in the race of per capita cell phone usage internationally but when it comes to smart phones Pakistan still lacks the charm. Internationally the boom of smart phones has touched 79% approximately. But Pakistan where approximately 104 million mobile phone connections are active and approximately having the cell phone density up to 65% is still far behind in Smartphone grabs with only 5% density. This low penetration of smart phones across the Pakistan is due to so many factors.

Lack of local carrier’s interest

If we make comparison of Pakistan with any EU country or Britain than there is some enormous price differences between us. Over there all the cell phones are fully adopted by mobile phone carriers and every individual can acquire them on contract basis. An Iphone Smartphone or any of Nokia mobiles cost almost $200 or less, which is approximately 18000 PKR. But here in Pakistan no Smartphone which is 4G and having a latest platform like android, or IOS cost less than 50K. Now that’s a stretch. People do not afford buying brand new smart phones here because they are too expensive, and carriers do not take much interest in this business model as they think that culture in Pakistan does not allow this. Though some companies like Zong, and ufone have taken the first step for this type of cell phone penetration and mobilink also time to time launch different Blackberry models for business class users, but this business model did not had any immense response from public.

No 3G installation

Another big reason for low penetration of smart phones in Pakistan is the lack of 3G networks availability in Pakistan. Most of the smart phones are data centric and give best use with high network data centers. But in Pakistan most of the people haven’t even heard of 3G network and when they grab a cell phone they really don’t know how and why to use it. Though Samsung Mobiles have recently launched a new line of smart phones in Pakistan, and it is also getting subtle response too but in order to increase the numbers it would require more efforts and more time.


Classic culture

Then another factor that is somewhat stopping this smart penetration in Pakistan is lack of interest on touch screens and elegant mobile devices. Well I am talking about majority here, they do not believe on having a cell phone which is not physically very rigid and strong. And the biggest reason of this perception is made by Nokia Mobiles, who were the first market entrants here. Keeping all these things in mind so many big giants like apple, Vodafone and some other companies have not touched Pakistani market yet and launched here officially. But without any doubt Pakistani market is one of the biggest potential markets for any Smartphone manufacturer. And I am not saying this out of the blue if we look around we would see so many people using iphone, and other smart phones which obviously are unofficial versions but still there is a particular niche market in Pakistan which would love to have more and more smart phone companies coming here.

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