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iOS, Android increase smartphone market share while all others lose ground

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 
The battle for smartphone operating system supremacy is quickly becoming a two-horse race, as the latest data from comScore shows that only Apple and Google were able to grow their market share in the U.S. through January.

The research firm's latest U.S. Mobile Subscriber Market Share report for January 2012 was issued this week, revealing that Apple's iOS gained 1.4 percent market share between October of 2011 and January of 2012. That put Apple in second place, behind Google's Android which grew its U.S. market share 2.3 percentage points in the same period.

Android, which is available on all domestic carriers with a wide range of handsets from multiple manufacturers, controls 48.5 percent of the market. Apple's lineup of three iPhone models put it in second place with 29.5 percent of the market.

In third was Research in Motion, which saw its market share drop 2 points to 15.2 percent. Microsoft also lost more ground, dropping 1 point to 4.4 percent and fourth place.

Rounding out the top five was Nokia's Symbian platform, which lost a tenth of a point. The Finnish handset maker accounted for 1.5 percent of total U.S. smartphone subscribers ages 13 and up in the three-month period ending in January.

The number of U.S. smartphone subscribers topped 100 million in January, up 13 percent since October. There are now 101.3 million smartphone subscribers in America, comScore said.




In terms of total hardware sales, with combined smartphone and "feature" phone sales, Samsung was the leader, accounting for 25.4 percent of all devices in use in the three-month period. Apple, which only makes smartphones, represented 12.8 percent of the market, an increase of 2 points from the October quarter.

Between Samsung and Apple are second-place LG, with 19.7 percent of the U.S. market, and Motorola, taking 13.2 percent. All of the top three saw their market share slip in January 2012, while Apple was the only company in the top five to gain ground.

comScore's study surveyed more than 30,000 U.S. mobile subscribers. It also found that 74.6 percent of mobile subscribers use text messaging on their device, while 48.6 percent have downloaded applications, and 48.5 percent use a browser. Another 35.7 percent accessed a social networking site or blog, 31.8 percent played games, and 24.5 percent listened to music.

[ View article on AppleInsider ]
post #2 of 28
so nice to watch Microsoft continue to lose market share. How much shareholder value are they throwing away on their failed phone platform? How long can it last?
post #3 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by bullhead View Post

so nice to watch Microsoft continue to lose market share. How much shareholder value are they throwing away on their failed phone platform? How long can it last?

Please don't count them out yet.
post #4 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by bullhead View Post

so nice to watch Microsoft continue to lose market share. How much shareholder value are they throwing away on their failed phone platform? How long can it last?

By the time Ballmer "ges it right", will anyone care? There's a smart phone feeding frenzy going on and monkey boy is still trying to get his worm on the hook.
"That (the) world is moving so quickly that iOS is already amongst the older mobile operating systems in active development today." — The Verge
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"That (the) world is moving so quickly that iOS is already amongst the older mobile operating systems in active development today." — The Verge
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post #5 of 28
I already care!

I never expect to own a Windows phone, and Metro cannot touch the full experience and usability of my iPhone, but Metro is at least genuinely new, interesting, and even visually appealing. And it’s still very young.

It wouldn’t shock me to see everyone, Apple included, using more Star-Trek-style flat colors and less shading in the next decade. (Kind of the logical trend from glass/aqua to what we have now and beyond. And Microsoft got there first! As a major OS at least—the general visual style has been done before. But beyond the look, a lot of the interaction in Metro really feels new and different; I can appreciate that even if I prefer iOS.)

The success of Android (an intentional BlackBerry clone that shifted to be an intentional iPhone clone) over Metro is a shame—it takes real choice out of the market. Metro is certainly a response to Apple and wouldn’t have happened without the iPhone. But it’s a response, not a clone attempt! I give credit for that. And Microsoft seems to be messing it up already... trying to shoehorn desktop Windows and Metro together.

But there’s time—there’s still a chance of some partial success for Microsoft here. And this gamble, in the long run, could be THE most important thing to throw their shareholders’ money at! They need to cling less to old models, not more.
post #6 of 28
watching RIM crumble like a train wreck in slow motion. And i can not look away.

M$ will remain entrenched and will be the solid 3rd place OS. We are guaranteed to see a halo effect, once pc's and tablets start using win8/metro. I will be downloading the beta this weekend.
post #7 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by bullhead View Post

so nice to watch Microsoft continue to lose market share. How much shareholder value are they throwing away on their failed phone platform? How long can it last?

They need an honest to goodness push for Windows Phone 7 to make it worth using. I support Windows Phone 7 and wish it were as fleshed out as iOS.

When Android comes crashing down, there HAS to be something to fill the void, and there's no better mobile OS to do it than Windows Phone 7.



Because everyone who buys WebOS is a bumbling, incompetent fool, it seems, and they wind up either going bankrupt or nearly destroying their computer division.

Originally posted by Relic

...those little naked weirdos are going to get me investigated.
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Originally posted by Relic

...those little naked weirdos are going to get me investigated.
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post #8 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

The battle for smartphone operating system supremacy is quickly becoming a two-horse race, as the latest data from comScore shows that only Apple and Google were able to grow their market share in the U.S. through January. ...

You know, constantly publishing articles like this, that point to reports like this, but not ever talking about the methodology used in making the report is really a complete waste of time (if the goal is to inform anyone of anything).

Some of these market share articles are based on advertising views, some are based on counting browser access, some are based on "sales" (channel and otherwise) and almost all of them use different math, different preconditions or assumptions etc.

This is why we get an article one week that says "Android rules!" and one the next that says their market share is falling. What's the point really? How hard would it be to either not publish them at all or make some rules for AppleInsider's writers to use when reporting on this stuff?

This whole article could be boiled down to "ComScore says X." \

How about giving us the tools to decide whether we want to believe what ComScore says instead of just parroting their report?
post #9 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post

You know, constantly publishing articles like this, that point to reports like this, but not ever talking about the methodology used in making the report is really a complete waste of time (if the goal is to inform anyone of anything).

Some of these market share articles are based on advertising views, some are based on counting browser access, some are based on "sales" (channel and otherwise) and almost all of them use different math, different preconditions or assumptions etc.

This is why we get an article one week that says "Android rules!" and one the next that says their market share is falling. What's the point really? How hard would it be to either not publish them at all or make some rules for AppleInsider's writers to use when reporting on this stuff?

This whole article could be boiled down to "ComScore says X." \

How about giving us the tools to decide whether we want to believe what ComScore says instead of just parroting their report?

<<comScore's study surveyed more than 30,000 U.S. mobile subscribers.>>

I generally agree with you but at least this is a little more accurate in that it's a true cross sample. Most of these crap stories are based on ad agencies which inherently lean one way or another.
I'm not a pessimist. I'm an optimist, with experience.
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I'm not a pessimist. I'm an optimist, with experience.
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post #10 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by nagromme View Post

I already care!

I never expect to own a Windows phone, and Metro cannot touch the full experience and usability of my iPhone, but Metro is at least genuinely new, interesting, and even visually appealing. And its still very young.

It wouldnt shock me to see everyone, Apple included, using more Star-Trek-style flat colors and less shading in the next decade. (Kind of the logical trend from glass/aqua to what we have now and beyond. And Microsoft got there first! As a major OS at leastthe general visual style has been done before. But beyond the look, a lot of the interaction in Metro really feels new and different; I can appreciate that even if I prefer iOS.)

The success of Android (an intentional BlackBerry clone that shifted to be an intentional iPhone clone) over Metro is a shameit takes real choice out of the market. Metro is certainly a response to Apple and wouldnt have happened without the iPhone. But its not a response, not a clone attempt! I give credit for that. And Microsoft seems to be messing it up already... trying to shoehorn desktop Windows and Metro together.

But theres timetheres still a chance of some partial success for Microsoft here. And this gamble, in the long run, could be THE most important thing to throw their shareholders money at! They need to cling less to old models, not more.

Use Android for a week and you`ll know that it feels and operates very different from iOS. Samsung and LG copy iOS`s visual style, but devices from HTC, Lenovo, and even stock 4.0 are all quite different (from iOS and each other).

Microsoft`s metro is very nice visually, but Microsoft has been slow to progress the technical capabilities of the OS, and it still feels very much like a work in progress... The live tiles are nice and show great potential, and I would be interested in trying out a WP8 device when they launch, especially if there`s a significant amount of portability between Windows 8 and WP8, but as of right now, it`s just not up to par with iOS or Android.
post #11 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by nagromme View Post

I already care!

It wouldnt shock me to see everyone, Apple included, using more Star-Trek-style flat colors and less shading in the next decade. (Kind of the logical trend from glass/aqua to what we have now and beyond. And Microsoft got there first! As a major OS at leastthe general visual style has been done before. But beyond the look, a lot of the interaction in Metro really feels new and different; I can appreciate that even if I prefer iOS.)

Metro is living 1980 nostalgia all over again. Welcome back to flat 16 colors in full EGA mode.
post #12 of 28
I'm so tired of articles like this.
Are you talking about "telephones"? or are you talking about the number of copies of operating systems that are sold (and all devices that go along with each copy of those operating systems)
How many device running iOS have been sold (and what is the cash total attached to that number?
How many device running Android have been sold (and what is the cash total attached to that number?

That's the question. That is what matters. Nobody ever lays it out like this, even though this is the crux of the question. This is all that matters.
Maybe Android is ahead (total number of copies), but the article above does not address that question, even though it pretends it does.
post #13 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by nofear1az View Post

Metro is living 1980 nostalgia all over again. Welcome back to flat 16 colors in full EGA mode.

Yup.

Once again the big loser in the share shakedown is MS. And they don't even have any cachet or "premium experience" reputation that would justify such a low share.

Once again: BALLMER. He should have been handed his pink-slip years ago.
post #14 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by isaidso View Post

I'm so tired of articles like this.
Are you talking about "telephones"? or are you talking about the number of copies of operating systems that are sold (and all devices that go along with each copy of those operating systems)
How many device running iOS have been sold (and what is the cash total attached to that number?
How many device running Android have been sold (and what is the cash total attached to that number?

That's the question. That is what matters. Nobody ever lays it out like this, even though this is the crux of the question. This is all that matters.
Maybe Android is ahead (total number of copies), but the article above does not address that question, even though it pretends it does.

It's been like this for a while. There is no standard way of measuring this stuff. There are too many different factors or ways to look at it. But the bottom line is this:

Google has their OS on more phones.... and Apple makes more money.

Everybody is doing well, though. Google chose to go down the road of giving its OS away for free to any OEM who wants it... and Google collects ad revenue. (Google is an advertising company, after all)

Apple is, and has always been, a hardware company... and they sell tons of units.
post #15 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Scrip View Post

It's been like this for a while. There is no standard way of measuring this stuff. There are too many different factors or ways to look at it. But the bottom line is this:

Google has their OS on more phones.... and Apple makes more money.

Everybody is doing well, though. Google chose to go down the road of giving its OS away for free to any OEM who wants it... and Google collects ad revenue. (Google is an advertising company, after all)

Apple is, and has always been, a hardware company... and they sell tons of units.

This. Except on this forum, if you are not number 1 you are zero. Though Apple is racking in more cash than anyone, Google is racking in tons of cash as well, not bad for a company that sells nothing.
post #16 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hellacool View Post

This. Except on this forum, if you are not number 1 you are zero. Though Apple is racking in more cash than anyone, Google is racking in tons of cash as well, not bad for a company that sells nothing.

Google is racking in tons of cash from the iOS platform. I think they are a long way off from even breaking even from their Android investments sans the Motorola buyout.

As for Google selling nothing, they have about 8 billion products on the market.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply
post #17 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by bullhead View Post

so nice to watch Microsoft continue to lose market share. How much shareholder value are they throwing away on their failed phone platform? How long can it last?

While I think Android will stay on top in terms of number of units, I think in the end the major money makers will be Apple and Microsoft. Heck, Microsoft gets $$ from each android device sold, Apple is beating their door down too.

For everyone else that has zero standards for wanting a consistent, smooth, polished experience there is always the bottom-of-the-barrel Android iPhone/iPad clone for ya.
post #18 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hellacool View Post

This. Except on this forum, if you are not number 1 you are zero. Though Apple is racking in more cash than anyone, Google is racking in tons of cash as well, not bad for a company that sells nothing.

So... on Apple forums... Apple is #1 because of cash.

And on Android forums... Google is #1 because of the number of Android phones out there.

I'm glad I love all tech sites... non-partisan
post #19 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

The research firm's latest U.S. Mobile Subscriber Market Share report for January 2012 was issued this week, revealing that Apple's iOS gained 1.4 percent market share between October of 2011 and January of 2012. That put Apple in second place, behind Google's Android which grew its U.S. market share 2.3 percentage points in the same period.



If it is seen as a "two horse race", then Apple can be seen to be losing.
post #20 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by I am a Zither Zather Zuzz View Post

If it is seen as a "two horse race", then Apple can be seen to be losing.

Apple market share isn't the same as Android market share.

In fact, Apple is actually winning all the important battles. Open your eyes.
post #21 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

Apple market share isn't the same as Android market share.

In fact, Apple is actually winning all the important battles. Open your eyes.

Winning... losing... who gives a shit

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EWeVbKwrdGs
post #22 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by I am a Zither Zather Zuzz View Post

If it is seen as a "two horse race", then Apple can be seen to be losing.

But it's not a two horse race. It's one horse versus the aggregate of all other horses in the race that have the same sponsor, except in this case we're adding up all the distances of all those other horses and then comparing to the single horse that has its own sponsor. Not exactly a fair way to measure a race.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply
post #23 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by bullhead View Post

so nice to watch Microsoft continue to lose market share. How much shareholder value are they throwing away on their failed phone platform? How long can it last?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ddawson100 View Post

Please don't count them out yet.

Years late to the party and Windows 8 is just going to swoop in and take it all away from Apple and Google? Like the Zune conquered the mp3 player market? Like Windows Mobile 7 is chipping away at iOS and Android?

But I shouldn't crow. After all, for years I wandered in the wilderness with my Mac bretheren agast at the fact that the majority of the world couldn't see the superiority of my chosen platform. What goes around comes around.
post #24 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by I am a Zither Zather Zuzz View Post

If it is seen as a "two horse race", then Apple can be seen to be losing.

Losing in what way, pray tell?

Sales? nope

Profit? nope

Value? nope

Developers? nope

Public Image? nope

Android "first" app development? nope

iOS vs Android in total device market share (phones and tablets and other)? nope again.

Oh, oh, that's right. Smartphone market share. That's all that really counts, I guess, when you're losing in every other metric. Well yes, then Apple can be seen as "losing." You got us there by golly.
post #25 of 28
"Research firm Kantar Worldpanel ComTech said Apple's share of the U.S. market doubled from a year ago to 44.9 percent in the October to December period, just beating Google's Android smartphones, which slipped to 44.8 percent from 50 percent."

From the Reuters report:
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...8CO4QP20120125

Additionally we know from Apple's quarterly reports that iPhone units and dollars have more than doubled from a year ago. Matching Kanter, while ComScore is claiming that iPhone sales are up ~3%. (Apple gaining 1.4% market share in a US smartphone market up 13% on quarter.)

Math no worky for ComScore.

Who owns ComScore and who paid for this report.
post #26 of 28
Well I think whichever way one looks at it, smart phones are currently a two-horse race between Android and iOS.

The two do not compete with each other which is why it is very hard to make comparisons - that is they do compete in certain areas, and not in others, and the business plan behind iOS vs Android could not be more different.

- Android is by default everywhere - what else are hardware makers going to use? Those few that bet on other platforms (hello Nokia) have lost it all. iOS is not available - so what are they going to do, shut down? Android is the default option for everyone not named Apple.

- Considering Nokia had 34% market share in its heyday, it's inconceivable Apple would have more (and all high end). That's the ceiling as far as I am concerned. That means iOS won't exceed 34% of all phones. Android might have all the rest, but the hardware is made by Samsung, LG, SE, HTC, and maybe some new chinese brands. From where they are now to 34% presents ENORMOUS growth potential for Apple.

- iOS runs on tablets - Apple is looking to completely own this space for years to come. By the time the competition has caught up they'll have sold 200M iPads - and that's if everything just continues as is. More iPads are sold than PCs.

- Android's market share is at the low end. I am willing to bet Android handsets that cost the same as the iPhone are selling a fraction in volume. Here in Asia everything is unsubsidized and more and more feature phones are replaced by cheap android phones - they have a small screen and slow processor and so people use them basically the same they would a feature phone. In other words the best phone you can buy for $150 runs Android. Android is winning in this market because Apple's cheapest phone starts at $400 (a 3GS).

- Owning the high end is a good position to attack the low end. Apple hasn't done this so far - they've been too busy figuring out how to make enough high end phones to satisfy demand. That's also why they have recently cut prices for the first time on the iPhone (you won't see that in subsidized wonderland USA where ATT gladly takes those profits). Their profit margins were absurdly high but as long as you can't make enough it doesn't make sense to lower prices - it would just compound problems. If they get a few more factories up and running they might go for the low end too - they've done it before with the iPod....
post #27 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by bullhead View Post

so nice to watch Microsoft continue to lose market share. How much shareholder value are they throwing away on their failed phone platform? How long can it last?

Don't start counting those chickens yet.

Windows 8 will be inescapable in a few months, the Metro UI will become ubiquitous overnight. People will naturally gravitate to something familiar, just as Mac users gravitate to the iPad and iPhone.

And now that Microsoft now has their own de facto hardware unit in Nokia, they can steer clear of the nightmare that android experiences with HTC, Samsung and everyone else.
post #28 of 28
IMO, the important numbers are the following:

Apple had sold 250 million iOS devices late last year
Android had been shipped on 200 million devices around the same time
Blackberry had 70 million subscribers around the same time
Windows Phone shipped on 10 million devices around the same time

That gives ownership shares (including tablets) of:

Apple: 47%
Google: 38%
RIM: 13%
Microsoft: 2%

Excluding tablets and iPods will shift the numbers to place Apple and Google almost even but both still far in the lead of the dying brands.

The stats in the article show the growth rates of each and because Android is growing faster, it will overtake Apple in overall volume, likely sometime this year but we have to keep in mind how impressive it is that Apple still has so much share.

It would be like Apple having an equal desktop share with Microsoft. This would mean Apple shipping more computers than HP and Dell. With the iPad counted, this is the case of course.

So far Apple alone has sold the same number of units as every other Android device manufacturer at a higher price point and there are quite a few of those manufacturers.
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