Android at 80% of smartphone market share; Apple sinks

Windows was big winner with shipments increasing over 77% year to year

Technology trends and news by Steven Loeb
August 7, 2013
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Tim Cook! What is going on with Apple in the smartphone wars?

Android shipped 187.4 million units, for 79.3% of the market share in smartphones in the most recent quarter.

That is compared to the 108 million united shipped in the same quarter in 2012, which gave the operating system a worldwide share of 69.1%, according to a report from the International Data Corporation (IDC) on Wednesday. Overall, Android saw a 73% increase in units sold.

In the second quarter of 2013, iOS saw 31.2 million smartphone units shipped, for a 13.2% market share. That is down over 3% from the 16.6% market share it saw a year ago, but Apple still saw a 20% increase in shipments, up from 26 million in the second quarter of 2012.

This news comes just a week or so after it was reported that Apple had lost a significant chunk of the tablet market share last quarter as well.

Still, IDC points out, this is not necessarily bad news for Apple, as the company had no new releases and still saw strong demand. 

Meanwhile, IDC attributes Android's sales increase to the release of Samsung's Galaxy S4, as well as LG and Chinese vendors Huawei, Lenovo, and ZTE, each of which saw double-digit shipment volumes in the millions.

Indeed, Samsung was, by far, Android's largest vendor, shipping 73.3 million units, or 39.1% of all Android phones. No other vendor even had 7%. 

Still lagging away behind, but seeing tremendous growth, was Windows. While its overall market share did not see much of an increase, going from 3.1% to 3.7%, it saw a huge increase in shipments: going from 4.9 million to 8.7 million. That is an increase of 77.6%. It goes without saying that with a few more increases like that and Apple could have a big problem on its hands.

So what propelled this growth for Windows? One word: Nokia, which released two new smartphones and grew its presence at multiple mobile operators. It accounted for an astounding 81.6% of all Windows phones. Behind that was Samsung, with 11.5%. Combined, these two companies along made up over 92% of all Windows phone sales.

Of all the major smartphone operating systems, the real loser this quarter was, of course, BlackBerry. Of the top four, BlackBerry was the only one to actually ship less smartphones this quarter than a year ago, dropping to 6.8 million from 7.7 million, a decrease of 11.7%. Meanwhile, it also lost nearly half of its market share, going from 4.9% to $2.9%. 

This is not surprising news, as reports of problems with sales of the BlackBerry 10 were already coming out by April, when a report from financial-services firm Detwiler Fenton said that returns of the BlackBerry10 had begun to exceed sales. 

As IDC points out, "it is still early days for the platform, however, and BlackBerry will need time and resources to evangelize more end users," but it is clear that Windows has become the number three choice, behind Android and iOS.

"Last quarter we witnessed Windows Phone shipments surpassing BlackBerry and the trend has continued into the second quarter," Ryan Reith, Program Manager with IDC's Mobility Tracker Programs, said in a statement.

"Nokia has clearly been the driving force behind the Windows Phone platform, and we expect that to continue. However, as more and more vendors enter the smartphone market using the Android platform, we expect Windows Phone to become a more attractive differentiator in this very competitive market segment."

Overall, smartphone sales saw a big increase year to year, going up 51.3%. 236.4 million units were shipped, compared to 156.2 million in Q2 2012.

Shipments grew 9.3% quarter to quarter, compared to the 216.3 million units shipped in the first quarter.

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