Android surges past iPhone in smartphone sales
RIM and Windows Mobile continue to slide
Sales of Android-based smartphones are surging, tearing chunks of market share out of Apple, RIM, and Windows Mobile's hides.
According to a report released Monday by the analysts at The Nielsen Company, although RIM and Apple still hold their number one and two positions as the top two suppliers of smartphones in the US, Android phones are catching up — fast.
According to Nielsen's figures, among new subscribers in the past six months, those picking up Android phones inched past iPhone buyers in the second quarter of this year, garnering a 27 per cent market share to the iPhone's 23 per cent.
Here comes Android...
In addition, a separate report by the market watchers at Canalys pegs Android-phone growth at a whopping 886 per cent from the second quarter of 2009 to the same quarter this year.
Both info-nuggets, however, carry hefty caveats. The iPhone 4 shipped on June 24, right before the quarter ended. Its 1.7 million first-weekend sales are presumably included among the Nielsen numbers, but sales of the Jobsian handheld — antennagate or no antennagate — have been strong during the ensuing weeks. A true iPhone v. Android analysis must wait until the iPhone 4 has a full quarter in the sun.
The Canalys number, also, is to be taken with an exceptionally large helping of caution, seeing as how an 886 per cent growth from a tiny number — Android sales in the second quarter of 2009 — is not a realistic metric. The Android-based Motorola Droid, for example, didn't see the light of day until November of that year.
Even with those cautions in mind, however, the growth of Android is not to be taken lightly if you happen to occupy a corner office in Cupertino, California, or Waterloo, Ontario. Nielsen's numbers, for example, put RIM's six-month market share at 45 per cent in the second quarter of 2009, but by the same period this year it has slid to 33 per cent.
...and there goes RIM and Windows Mobile
Even more worrisome to those enterprising Canadians is RIM's comparatively poor performance when Nielsen asked current owners of Android, iPhone, and BlackBerry phones which type of phone they'd consider for their next purchase. Only 42 per cent of BlackBerry owners said they'd stick with their current brand, while 71 per cent of Android owners and a full 89 per cent of iPhone owners planned to remain loyal to their respective OSes.
And speaking of corner offices, there can't be many smiles in Redmond, Washington, either. Windows Mobile held a 27 per cent US-smartphone market share in the second quarter of 2009, according to Nielsen, but that number had shrunk to 15 per cent by the second quarter of this year.
but which android?
I have looked at android phones... and ttere are some really great 'droids out there... but my biggest issue is which android? 1.5, 1.6, 2.0, 2.1, 2.2.... and can I rely on updates???
It seems that the telcos (and manufacturers) are proving a huge stumbling block to updating of 'droid phones and unless you are willing to "root" the phone you get stuck with whichever version of android came with the phone.
That has to change, The telcos and manufacturers need to sort that out asap!
rest of the world
hard to say but there's some dirt-cheap Android phones out there even on PAYG. The lower price was always going to be a bigger seller than RIM's "we're very serious" and Apple's "so cool it doesn't even make calls" thing.
why are android and linux shown in different lines?
please forgive my ignorance, but really, isn't android running on linux?
"Why? It sucks, I read this all the time!"
Stickiness. The reason Apple ties its music, video & apps to the iPhone is because they are tied to the platform. People are not being "loyal" to the platform in the traditional sense, they're stuck with it.
Which is why if anyone has any sense at all they won't build up a paid for collection in the first place. Use the free apps and be free to get the hell out of something better comes along. As it has.
The last qarter global sales figures had Nokia Symbian smartphones at 41% given that other vendors are also still shipping a few as well, you have to that would put Symbian's global share at about 50%?. Given that this shows Symbian at 2% in the US market, what is the real rest of the world share of Symbian?
The big question: Is the US marketplace now a leading indicator for the rest of the world? When it comes to mobile it never has been in the past.