Total install base for devices set to soar this year, market watcher claims.
The number of smartphones sold across the globe will reach one billion units by the end of 2013, Deloitte has claimed.
The number of new smartphones shipped this year will cause the total number of units in use worldwide to almost double, reaching close to two billion before 2014.
The firm's research also shows that a growing number of people will not take full advantage of the full functionality of these devices.
Deloitte said it expects approximately 20 per cent of smartphone users to rarely or never connect to the internet using their phone in 2013.
However, the 400 million phones in this group will not be idle, but will instead be used to carry out basic functions, such as calling, texting and taking photos.
The company claims the reason for using smartphones in the same way as feature phones “are multiple and often overlapping”.
It highlighted four key causal factors: the limited capabilities of entry-level and older, secondhand phones; a lack of interest or ability of users; confusion over the cost of data tariffs; and poor Wi-Fi access.
When it came to the use of smartphone apps, Deloitte’s research showed 16 per cent of owners have never downloaded one to their device. In developed markets, the figure rose to 21 per cent and even among urban professionals it was still as high as 13 per cent.
The full Deloitte TMT predictions report for 2013 will be published on 15 January.