Port Washington, NY, May 26, 2021 – Following a challenging 2020, sales in the U.S. of mobile accessories including cases, screen protectors, and mobile power items saw a return to growth in the first quarter of 2021. Double-digit revenue losses in 2020 were replaced by double-digit gains in Q1 for mobile phone cases (+18%), while screen protector sales grew 9%, and mobile power accessories were up 38%, according to NPD’s Retail Tracking Service.
“The declines we saw in screen protectors and cases were in part driven by store closures and other shifts in consumer behavior as a result of the pandemic. These products are often purchased alongside new devices, and in the case of screen protection, applied at the point of sale – something consumers may be hesitant or unable to do themselves,” said Jill Aldort, director, industry analyst for The NPD Group. “We expect to see sales of these products grow in 2021.”
Mobile power sales fared better during 2020, seeing only 10% revenue declines, as consumers in many cases needed to keep a number of devices charged for working and learning from home. In addition, new smartphone launches in 2020 led to periods of growth for products like wireless charging solutions and USB-C wall chargers. In Q4 2020, unit sales of wireless chargers were up 16% compared to Q4 2019, and up 43% in Q1 2021 (vs. Q1 2020). In Q4 2020, unit sales of USB-C power bricks were more than 4x the sales in Q4 2019. This continued into Q1 2021, with sales more than 6x that of Q1 2020.
“Advances in charging and consumer desire for the fastest charging solution will result in positive momentum for the category in 2021,” noted Aldort.