iPhone gains US platform share at expense of Android, Windows, BlackBerry

Posted:
in iPhone edited August 2015
The iPhone grew as a platform in May to 43.5 percent of the U.S. smartphone market, encroaching on Android, which shrank slightly to 52.1 percent, according to comScore research data released on Monday.




In February, Android and iPhone accounted for a respective 52.8 and 41.7 percent shares, comScore remarked. Microsoft's Windows Phone fell from 3.5 to 3 percent by May, while BlackBerry slipped from 1.8 to 1.3 percent.

Apple notably retained the top spot in terms of individual smartphone vendors, beating out Samsung, which did at least advance a tenth of a percentage point to 28.7 percent. All other major vendors lost ground -- LG shrank from 8.3 to 8.2 percent, while Motorola dipped from 5.1 to 4.9 percent. HTC declined from 3.8 to 3.5 percent.

The iPhone has controlled a sizable portion of the U.S. market for years. Android gradually came to overshadow it as a platform, but mainly due to being cheaply and easily adopted by competitors, and some successful flagship products like those in the Samsung Galaxy S series.

Apple's positive performance versus Android in recent quarters has often been linked to the switch to bigger screens for the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, which shipped in September 2014. Until then no iPhone had a screen bigger than 4 inches, even as some Android phones were approaching 5 or even 6 inches.

Two new iPhones, commonly known as the 6s and 6s Plus, could be announced as soon as next month. While retaining the same 4.7- and 5.5-inch sizes, they're expected to gain A9 processors, 2 gigabytes of RAM, and support for Apple Watch-style Force Touch controls.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 46
    comScore, Canalsys, Strategy Analytics, IDC, Forrester....

    Wow. I wonder how people who subscribe to all of these guys survive the cognitive dissonance of junk, sometimes contradictory, often seemingly pulled-out-of-thin-air (since nowhere do they describe data collection methodologies) data.
  • Reply 2 of 46
    sockrolidsockrolid Posts: 2,788member

    Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post



    comScore, Canalsys, Strategy Analytics, IDC, Forrester....



    Wow. I wonder how people who subscribe to all of these guys survive the cognitive dissonance of junk, sometimes contradictory, often seemingly pulled-out-of-thin-air (since nowhere do they describe data collection methodologies) data.

     

    And anyway, market share is meaningless.

    Profitability is the most important metric.

  • Reply 3 of 46
    sockrolid wrote: »

    And anyway, market share is meaningless.
    Profitability is the most important metric.

    Certainly far less important than profitability (cash flows) for stock price, but not 'meaningless' by any stretch of the imagination.
  • Reply 4 of 46
    radarthekatradarthekat Posts: 2,474moderator
    Certainly far less important than profitability (cash flows) for stock price, but not 'meaningless' by any stretch of the imagination.

    Market share is meaningful only when it confers some advantage not attainable otherwise. This could be economies of scale in manufacturing costs, visibility to consumers, ecosystem lock-in, greater profits, etc. But Android gains no appreciable advantage from selling many more smartphones at the low-end of the market versus Apple. Apple sells sufficient numbers of its phones to achieve enormous clout and economies of scale and associated price discounts in the manufacture of its products. Apple is arguably more visible to consumers than Android in its position as the more desirable brand, so again, no market share advantage for Android. And the amounts of money earned by developers in the Apple ecosystem causes most developers to develop for iOS first, so no market share advantage to Android there either. Since Apple’s iPhone earns the majority of profits in the smartphone industry, with far less market share, even this metric doesn’t support an argument that market share has any meaning with respect to Apple’s position in this market.
  • Reply 5 of 46
    You did realize you are looking at the report that came out July 2nd. The report that ends with the month of June will be out Friday I think.
  • Reply 6 of 46
    steven n.steven n. Posts: 1,043member
    sockrolid wrote: »
    And anyway, market share is meaningless.
    Profitability is the most important metric.

    I would say value creation is the most important metric. This measures the value created by the entire Eco-system and it will track closely to profit. The race to the bottom will destroy all value for all players in Android except (perhaps) Google.
  • Reply 7 of 46
    jbdragonjbdragon Posts: 1,782member
    Certainly far less important than profitability (cash flows) for stock price, but not 'meaningless' by any stretch of the imagination.

    When it comes to smart phones, market share is meaningless!!!. Apple is making around 90% of the profits. That's a single company with about a 20% world wide market share.

    To put it into simpler terms to understand, Android and that's everyone combined sell 1 zillion phones and break even. Apple sells 1 iPhone and makes a $50 profit. Who's winning? Well Android I guess if you want to go with market share. But in reality Apple is winning as they actually made an profit of $50. They also did it doing far, far less work.

    Take that up to 10 zillion Android phones versus 10 iPhone's. Again who won? Android still broke even and Apple made $500. This is exactly what's going obj right now and so market share in this case is meaningless. It's sure not helping. There was that article that even Google makes 75% of their profits from iOS!!!. How true that is? Removing Google as the default search obj iOS would be a huge hit in their pocket book for them and is why Google pays Apple money to make that happen.

    There's just no money to be made with Android. It's been a race to the bottom. The only company really winning with Android is Google.
  • Reply 8 of 46
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by JBDragon View Post



    There's just no money to be made with Android. It's been a race to the bottom. The only company really winning with Android is Google.

    Actually, I think Microsoft is making as much money [upfront] on Android as is Google;-)

     

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2014/10/07/how_much_is_that_microsoft_android_tax_again/

  • Reply 9 of 46
    appexappex Posts: 687member
    BlackBerry slipped from 1.8 to 1.3 percent?
    Are they the ones that were number 1 smartphone makers and made fun of the iPhone when released?
  • Reply 10 of 46
    jbdragon wrote: »
    There's just no money to be made with Android. It's been a race to the bottom. The only company really winning with Android is Google.

    It reminds me of the Windows PC market. There are a bunch of companies all selling "Windows PCs" with not much distinguishing one from another. So they have to compete on price.

    One company lowers prices... which forces another company to lower prices... and so on.

    If you're buying a Windows laptop... it doesn't really matter if it was assembled by HP or Dell. They both run the same operating system. So the consumer will just look at price.

    And that's what is happening with Android. There are 100 companies selling "Android phones" and they're all competing with each other.... on price. No one can make any money because there will always be someone else who will be selling an "Android phone" for a lower price.
  • Reply 11 of 46
    jfanningjfanning Posts: 3,379member
    appex wrote: »
    BlackBerry slipped from 1.8 to 1.3 percent?
    Are they the ones that were number 1 smartphone makers and made fun of the iPhone when released?

    No, Blackberry was not the number 1 smartphone maker when the iPhone was released
  • Reply 12 of 46
    jfanning wrote: »
    No, Blackberry was not the number 1 smartphone maker when the iPhone was released

    This article is about US market share... so we can only assume he was talking about the US.

    I'm pretty sure Blackberry/RIM was the #1 smartphone maker in the United States in 2007.

    The worldwide title went to Nokia/Symbian.
  • Reply 13 of 46
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 30,645member
    sockrolid wrote: »
    And anyway, market share is meaningless.
    Profitability is the most important metric.

    Market share is meaningful only when it confers some advantage not attainable otherwise. This could be economies of scale in manufacturing costs, visibility to consumers, ecosystem lock-in, greater profits, etc. But Android gains no appreciable advantage from selling many more smartphones at the low-end of the market versus Apple. Apple sells sufficient numbers of its phones to achieve enormous clout and economies of scale and associated price discounts in the manufacture of its products. Apple is arguably more visible to consumers than Android in its position as the more desirable brand, so again, no market share advantage for Android. And the amounts of money earned by developers in the Apple ecosystem causes most developers to develop for iOS first, so no market share advantage to Android there either. Since Apple’s iPhone earns the majority of profits in the smartphone industry, with far less market share, even this metric doesn’t support an argument that market share has any meaning with respect to Apple’s position in this market.

    jbdragon wrote: »
    When it comes to smart phones, market share is meaningless!!!. Apple is making around 90% of the profits. That's a single company with about a 20% world wide market share.

    To put it into simpler terms to understand, Android and that's everyone combined sell 1 zillion phones and break even. Apple sells 1 iPhone and makes a $50 profit. Who's winning? Well Android I guess if you want to go with market share. But in reality Apple is winning as they actually made an profit of $50. They also did it doing far, far less work.

    Take that up to 10 zillion Android phones versus 10 iPhone's. Again who won? Android still broke even and Apple made $500. This is exactly what's going obj right now and so market share in this case is meaningless. It's sure not helping. There was that article that even Google makes 75% of their profits from iOS!!!. How true that is? Removing Google as the default search obj iOS would be a huge hit in their pocket book for them and is why Google pays Apple money to make that happen.

    There's just no money to be made with Android. It's been a race to the bottom. The only company really winning with Android is Google.

    So you guys think it's meaningless, do you? So, if Apple instead had a 3% marketshare here, and Win Phone had a 43.5% marketshare instead, then it would be ok with you? Then Apple would be selling about 8% of the phones they're selling now. And you guys really think that even if Apple were making a profit there, it would be fine?

    You do understand that there would be almost no developers, just as we see with Win Phone. And it would be very unlikely that Apple would be making a profit.

    So you really need to define your terms here, and understand what this all means.
  • Reply 14 of 46
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 30,645member
    jfanning wrote: »
    No, Blackberry was not the number 1 smartphone maker when the iPhone was released

    In the USA it was. It had a 40% smartphone marketshare. And the article is about the USA.
  • Reply 15 of 46
    sockrolidsockrolid Posts: 2,788member

    Originally Posted by melgross View Post









    So you guys think it's meaningless, do you? So, if Apple instead had a 3% marketshare here, and Win Phone had a 43.5% marketshare instead, then it would be ok with you? Then Apple would be selling about 8% of the phones they're selling now. And you guys really think that even if Apple were making a profit there, it would be fine?



    You do understand that there would be almost no developers, just as we see with Win Phone. And it would be very unlikely that Apple would be making a profit.



    So you really need to define your terms here, and understand what this all means.

     

    Oh. Yeah.  Should have said "market share is meaningless unless you profit from it."

    M'kay?

  • Reply 16 of 46
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 30,645member
    The main reason why Apple had a 25% marketshare for so long in the USA was because of that exclusive contract with AT&T. Android makers first made it with Verizon, when they abandoned the Blackberry after the Storm failed so badly, with virtually 100% returns, according to the new book about RIM called "Losing The Signal". But quickly, they were taken up by all the big carriers, and most of the small ones as well.

    AT&T had about a 27% share of cell phone users, and almost all of their smartphone sales were iPhones. Even today, the iPhone dominates AT&T's smartphone sales.

    As soon as the iPhone became available on other carriers, it's marketshare began to rise. Considering pricing, I'm amazed that it's come up so far.
  • Reply 17 of 46
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 30,645member
    sockrolid wrote: »
    Oh. Yeah.  Should have said "market share is meaningless unless you profit from it."
    M'kay?

    "Oh yeah"? Great comeback! I think we all know that you have to profit from it or it isn't very good. That's a given. But when you guys say marketshare is meaningless, you're sorely mistaken. The only ones that are profiting from this are the two manufacturers with the biggest marketshare, Apple and Samsung. That should tell you something.

    One reason why a company can have large marketshare, other than from being a monopoly, is because people want your products. If they want them, then you can charge enough to make a profit. If they don't, and that pretty much goes for most phone manufacturers, then it's hard to make a profit. You have to cut prices to compete, and that's why Apple and Samsung, together, have more than 110% of all the profits in the industry.
  • Reply 18 of 46
    sockrolidsockrolid Posts: 2,788member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by melgross View Post





    "Oh yeah"? Great comeback! I think we all know that you have to profit from it or it isn't very good. That's a given. But when you guys say marketshare is meaningless, you're sorely mistaken. The only ones that are profiting from this are the two manufacturers with the biggest marketshare, Apple and Samsung. That should tell you something.



    One reason why a company can have large marketshare, other than from being a monopoly, is because people want your products. If they want them, then you can charge enough to make a profit. If they don't, and that pretty much goes for most phone manufacturers, then it's hard to make a profit. You have to cut prices to compete, and that's why Apple and Samsung, together, have more than 110% of all the profits in the industry.



    My points exactly.

  • Reply 19 of 46
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SockRolid View Post

     

     

    And anyway, market share is meaningless.

    Profitability is the most important metric.


    I don't doubt Apple will be profitable, however the stock will grow much slower than before. Cook will mess it all up, you watch.<img class=" src="http://forums-files.appleinsider.com/images/smilies//lol.gif" />

  • Reply 20 of 46
    solipsismysolipsismy Posts: 5,099member
    melgross wrote: »
    So you guys think it's meaningless, do you? So, if Apple instead had a 3% marketshare here, and Win Phone had a 43.5% marketshare instead, then it would be ok with you? Then Apple would be selling about 8% of the phones they're selling now. And you guys really think that even if Apple were making a profit there, it would be fine?

    If we're talking HW, then the iPhone at 8% would probably still lead on profits due to their higher efficiency and mindshare, which I'd argue is a huge reason why they were able to include that market share as a result. It certainly wasn't from cutting corners and ignoring adware to their devices. If we're talking the OS, why is 8% such a horrible thing? The Mac is the most profitable PC vendor in the world, Mac OS X is the best consumer OS, and there are more than enough apps, and more and more users every day. There aren't many traditional PC vendors that are increasing their numbers these days and they started doing, but i'm getting off topic here…

    They said that profit share is more important than an isolated account of marketshare, you then invent a scenario with Apple at an 8% market share, which you end with a question about their profit made on 8%. How is that reasonable? Clearly their comment implies that the profit share would have market share with it as it's not reasonable to assume they are making significant, industry-leading profits with an insufficient market share.

    So how does marketshare without profit help Apple? Do you really think there would be no developers if the iPhone only had 8%? What percent of the handset market did they have in 2008 when they launched the App Store? Wasn't it about 1%? That makes me think that Apple was making significant profits in the industry, that they had considerable mindshare, that the developer tools, iOS and App Store offered considerable advantages and opportunities that other platforms did not have… which all lead to their current, near profit monopoly of the handset industry.
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