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Covid-19: PCs, phones in use to hit 6.2bn units globally in 2021: Report

By Juliet Umeh

A new report by a global research and advisory company, Gartner, has revealed that the number of mobile phones and personal computers, PCs including laptops, desktops and tablets in use across the world will reach 6.2 billion units in 2021.

The research firm stated that the devices’ increase were due to the Covid-19 pandemic where more people work from home.
It explained that 125 million more laptops and tablets are expected to be in use than in 2020.

Senior Research Director at Gartner, Ranjit Atwal, said the Covid-19 pandemic has permanently changed device usage patterns of employees and consumers.
Atwal said: “With remote work turning into hybrid work, home education changing into digital education and interactive gaming moving to the cloud, both the types and number of devices people need, have and use will continue to rise.”

According to the research firm, in 2022, global devices installed base is on pace to reach 6.4 billion units, up 3.2 percent from 2021.
While the shift to remote work exacerbated the decline of desktop PCs, it boosted the use of tablets and laptops.

“In 2021, the number of laptops and tablets in use will increase 8.8 per cent and 11.7 per cent, respectively, while the number of deskbased PCs in use is expected to decline from 522 million in use in 2020 to about 470 million in use in 2022.

The report shows that users’ confidence is returning in the smartphone market.
Although the number of smartphones in use declined 2.6 percent in 2020, smartphone installed base is on pace to return to growth with a 1 percent increase in 2021, Gartner said.
Atwal: “With more variety and choice, and lower-priced 5G smartphones to choose from, consumers have begun to either upgrade their smartphones or upgrade from feature phones.

“The smartphone is also a key tool that people use to communicate and share moments during social distancing and social isolation.”

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