The number of smartphone users in Nigeria is quite overwhelming. Which has a scarier figure is Lagos, the smallest, yet most populous city in the country. Although the exact number of users is difficult to pin down, the data shows that the current number of smartphone users has tripled since the last five years. A trend in computer village, a hub for smartphone components is to sell counterfeit phone parts to users at quite affordable charges.
A reliable source from computer village confirmed that the components come in original and counterfeit but cannot be identified by mobile phone users. With an increasing number using sophisticated phones, there is an increasing demand for repair services.
The Genesis of the problem
With a falling naira, many people who desire to use sophisticated gadgets opt for using fairly used popularly known as “London used.” Unfortunately, while there are London used gadgets all over, there are no used components. You’d never hear anyone say he managed to get a London used screen to replace the bad one. With this situation, the prices are unrelative to one another. Imagine replacing a screen at 50k when the phone was acquired at 60k or a little more or less.? Any sane owner will opt for a new device.
By the way, not many people can splurge a whopping $1000 or more on a mobile gadget with a monthly salary less than a quarter.
The other reason could be that according to Moore’s law, the computing world doubles the amount of transistors in a dense integrated circuit every two years which makes it safe at least for now that the average life cycle of a gadget (hence the frequent launch of gadgets by tech companies) should be two years. But let’s add one more year to that law to cater for economic factors which play a great role in the way people buy computers. So, we now have that it’s expected that the average phone or computer user should use a device for a maximum of three years in order to stay up to date with trends in the industry. But it’s not uncommon to see people use PCs for well over six years in Nigeria and by extension Africa. This is primarily due to a great influx of refurbished and fairly used gadgets into the market which offer basic services to users and are usually more affordable. A big majority prefer to buy this over brand new products. Perhaps the most obvious reason is the economic power. Gartner for example identified currency fluctuations in emerging economies as well the effects of Brexit. Nigeria’s currency has weakened against all major currencies of the world and has performed the worst against the US dollar and the reason might be rather obvious. Oil is the mainstay of the economy and since a crash in the price of crude in the international market, the major source of FOREX has since been hit and this has further weakened the purchasing power of the Naira. For example, in just two years, the Naira has gone from 250 Naira a few years ago against the dollar to about 365 Naira now in the parallel market and with wages and incomes still basically the same, it’s now more difficult for people to buy gadgets which are primarily priced in the US dollar.
The engineers’ resolution
This resolution by the engineers didn’t have to be a tough nut to crack. It was simple because China gave a good alternative. If you ever hear anyone at Computer Village in Lagos tell you about a “follow come screen and a market screen,” it’s a hint that you have options to pick from. If the cost of a screen replacement was almost the same cost as the fairly used device, it’s only logical to opt of the cheaper component.
This has been a norm and no one has countered this claim. However, a new start-up in Nigeria, ifixgadgets.ng has revealed that many customers complain about the changed components especially when a screen is replaced. Complaints range from screen blotting out ink to screens tilting towards blue.
How you can avoid this
If you use a smartphone, there is almost little you can do to prevent your devise from getting a fault especially if you do not buy with a warrantee. Only new smartphones come with such luxury. So, if you belong to the category of fairly used subscribers you should rely on experts for your phone and laptops problems.
The social media has been agog with customers sharing testimonies about the technicians at the new start-up. Although some users of the app say their charges are higher, every customer agrees that the engineers give quality and top-notch services, from a responsive customer care centre to quality technicians.
IFIXGADGETS Nigeria is an online platform where you can get your Gadgets fixs like phones, laptops, ipad etc just by downloading our App. Looking for a cost effective gadget repair service? We pick up and deliver ASAP. 100% of our customers say they will recommend us to their friends.