A few years after Chinese OEMs started focusing on the Nigerian smartphone market–ending the Blackberry era and ushering in the Android revolution–things have really changed and Nigeria can now boast to be the largest mobile market in Africa. Just after Tecno Mobile revolutionized its business and ventured into the smartphone market, Android OS smartphones became accessible to a lot of average Nigerians at a time when Blackberry’s market share was at its peak.
Fast forward to the present, the competition is getting even more tight with Infinix, Innjoo, Oppsson, Wiko and other companies trying to win the heart of Nigerians. New smartphones ranging from low-end devices to high-end gadgets are released into the market every now and then.
But the question is this: Do these companies really know what Nigerians want?
Judging with the new devices in the market now, it is obvious that some know exactly what Nigerians want and fashion their products based on these basic needs. An average Nigerian don’t really know what NFC does and don’t really care if a smartphone has it. Even people using smartphones with NFC enabled hardly use it.
We take a look at the 7 basic features an average Nigerian cares for in a smartphone.
In a country with a world record epileptic power supply, any smartphone with an efficient and strong battery that can last the whole day is automatically a winner. This is so crucial that most people would never go for a device with a weak battery even if all the features in the world are packed into it with a very cheap price.
Nobody likes running out of battery when power supply isn’t even guaranteed. It’s either the battery is strong, or the phone comes with a power bank.
I’ve come to realize that an average Nigerian wants to hear stuffs like 13Mp, 16MP… it seems those huge numbers are magical. Whether the camera has a Carl Zeiss lens isn’t important, and I’m not sure an average Nigerian knows what Optical Image Stabilization means.
As long as the resolution sounds pretty huge and the produced image is clear and sharp, the smartphone is likely to sell.
The truth is that nobody wants to buy a smartphone that won’t withstand abuse. People want phones that can be dropped mistakenly and still work.
4. Speed & Performance
At this point, a phone that isn’t fast enough isn’t for an average person. Almost everyone uses Facebook, WhatsApp an BBM all at once. A smartphone should be able to run these basic apps simultaneously and conveniently whether or not its a quad-core processor phone or it’s got 2GB RAM.
Device speed and performance is a very important factor.
5. Internal Storage or Free SD Card
People want enough space on their device, a large internal storage means a lot. And again, if a device comes with a free 16GB SD card or more, it’s can be a selling point. No one wants to run out of space. HD movies alone eat a lot of space not to mention “heavy” Android games.
A limited storage that’s not expandable isn’t for Nigerians, trust me.
6. Screen Size
A device with a 3.5″ screen? Nah… it’s probably the kind of phone you would buy for a kid.
Nigeria may now be the largest economy in Africa but the truth remains that it’s still a growing economy. The price placed on a device will play major role in determining how many units will be sold.
The lower, the better.
Geeks and people who understand the technology behind these gadgets actually do want more but they are not the majority. Will a time come when the majority would prefer a Snapdragon processor to a MediaTek processor? I mean a time when people will realize that a huge resolution doesn’t really mean great pictures? That remains to be seen.