Every 60 Seconds, 18 Phones are Listed on OLX

OLX mobile phones sales are booming thanks to millennials; 75% of pre-owned phone buyers, and 55% of pre-owned phone sellers on OLX are 19-29 age years.

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India, the second largest market for smartphones globally is witnessing burgeoning demand for pre-owned mobile phones. According to the 2016 OLX CRUST (Consumer Research on Used-Goods and Selling Trends) survey, conducted by leading market research firm IMRB, households in the country are increasingly buying and selling pre-owned mobiles. 

According to CRUST the desire to ‘upgrade’ is the primary reason for selling mobile phones for 68 percent of the households in India. This is followed by 27 percent respondents, who cited ‘boredom’ as the main reason for selling mobile phones. It is interesting to note that, 75 percent of the pre-owned mobile phone buyers, and 55 percent of the pre-owned mobile phone sellers on OLX are young millennials in the 19-29 age years.

Another reason for the uptake in the category is the higher value received by selling online, which according to CRUST is 25 percent higher than the one realized through offline selling, and 47 percent higher than that through exchange.

The last financial year also saw Chinese brands witnessing a spike in listings on OLX, with the listing share of market leaders as well as Indian manufactures declining. For instance, during FY 2016-17 the listing share of Xiaomi, a leading Chinese brand climbed from 4.2 percent to 12.8 percent on OLX.

According to some industry reports, there are 20 million pre-owned mobile phones in India. In terms of the quantum of listings, in FY 2016-17 OLX registered more than 9.9 million listings of mobile devices in India. In other words, every minute eighteen mobile devices are listed on OLX.

According to industry estimates, approximately 80 percent of the pre-owned mobile phone trade is still offline. Being an unorganised sector, it is largely driven by offline sales through dealers, retailers, and shop-owners. Of the online marketplace of 4 million units, 2 million devices are ‘Marked as Sold’ on OLX. However, not all users mark their product as sold, hence the actual online share could be much higher, and in the online classifieds space it would be approximately 80 percent.

Every day, an average 5,500 phones are ‘Marked as Sold’ by the users on OLX. This implies that every minute more than 3 phones get sold on OLX.

On the buy side, OLX offers a steady stream of registered buyers who increase the chances of successful transactions. OLX receives 11.2 million buyer enquires on used mobiles every month, with each mobile listing receiving double-digit unique buyer responses.

Said Amarjit Singh Batra, CEO, OLX India, “Mobile phones is our biggest category in terms of listings, and is growing at 45 percent year-on-year. Yet it remains largely unorganized. We are the single largest player in the online space. Our biggest competition today is the unorganized offline market but there are some interesting trends to be observed there as well. We have learnt of many stories where offline buyers and dealers of pre-owned phones are using OLX to re-sell them. In other words, OLX is helping fuel entrepreneurial dreams of many offline dealers as well.”

OLX Insights

Most popular price band

Rupees 5000 to 10,000 is most popular price range for users looking for pre-owned smartphones.

Average age of mobiles

The average age of mobile phones declining from more than 3 years to under 2 years in the last two years on OLX.

Top cities that transacted mobile phones

The top cities that bought and sold high volumes of smartphones in FY 2016-17 were


Pune, Ahmedabad, Lucknow and Jaipur were the fastest growing, emerging markets in this category.

Top 5 mobile brands on OLX

In the quarter of January - March 2017, Samsung had the highest share at 27% of the listings, thereby emerging as the most popular brand

This was followed by Apple with 20.4% share; Xiaomi with 12.8%; Lenovo (including Motorola) with 9.8%, and Micromax with 2.8%

Other brands contributed 27.2% of the total mobile phone listings on OLX

Top 5 Popular Models on OLX

The most popular smartphone models searched on OLX in April 2017 were

iPhone 6
Samsung J7 Prime
Redmi Note 4
Vivo v5
Oppo f1s

On any given day one can find, 19,900 iPhone 6; 10,300 Samsung J7 Prime; 9,900 Redmi Note 4; 3,100 Vivo V5, and 3,800 Oppo f1S listed on the platform

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