Value of Brits' gadgets equals the GDP of Ecuador finds report

Brits own £51.6 billion of gadgets – expected to buy £9 billion more this year

A new study has found that Brits collectively spend £9 billion a year on gadgets on new gadgets.

Research commissioned by Affinion International also found that everyday Brits walk around with £22 billion of gadgets. The report was compiled by Conlumino.

According to the results of the report, Brits own £51.6 billion worth of gadgets. That figure means Brits' gadgets are worth the same as the GDP of Ecuador.

That is up £10 billion from just five years ago, despite the recession. This year alone, Brits are predicted to spend £9 billion on gadgets, spurred on by the explosion in demand for tablets and smartphones.

However, the amount Brits spend on gadgets also has a dark side. Affinion International – which provides customer loyalty and engagement services to retailers – found that gadget disasters cost Brits £1.2 billion in the last 12 months.

It found 17 per cent of gadget owners reported breaking at least one of their gadgets during that time frame.

Smartphones are the most commonly broken gadget, with just over four per cent of Brits admitting to breaking one in the last year.

The report also found that around four per cent of Brits had gadgets stolen, while another four per cent lost them. Together this amounts to around £400 million worth of lost and stolen gadgets.

However, despite the high cost of lost and theft, it found only a third of Brits insure their smartphones. Overall, almost two thirds of gadget owners have no insurance at all. That means around £33 billion worth of gadgets are uninsured in the UK.

“Britain is clearly a nation in love with its gadgets, with people willing to spend remarkable amounts of money on new devices,” commented Affinion International's senior vice president for Northern Europe, Giles Desforges.

“This spending can be expected to increase steadily as technology continues to advance and new must-have items come onto the market. What many may find eye-opening is just how much consumers are set back every year as a result of uninsured lost, stolen and broken devices.”

Ben Furfie is a former freelance writer for who produced daily news stories for the site on tech and gadgets. He also live-managed the T3 Award websites during the 2013 and 2014 T3 Awards. Ben later moved into web development and is now a Technical Development Manager leading a team of developers.