Android dominates first-time smartphone buyer biz
Apple strong in upgrade arena
Punters picking their first smartphone are more likely to select an Android handset. When they come to upgrade, however, there's a good chance they'll defect to the opposition.
So suggests market data from US research company NPD, released today.
NPD looked at sales data for Q4 2011, focusing not simply on the number of smartphone sold in toto but also those picked up by consumers upgrading from plain voice handsets and the like.
Of the first-time buyers, well over half - 57 per cent - said they had adopted an Android. Only 34 per cent were swayed by Apple's marketing, with nine per cent opting for a Windows Phone, BlackBerry - for both of whom the data is bad news - Bada or Symbian device.
Among all smartphone buyers, the 'others' category is, again, nine per cent of the total. But here Android's share has fallen to 48 per cent, while iOS' has risen to 43 per cent.
Source: NPD Smartphone Track
So clearly Android has taken a strong lead among consumers new to the category - Android phones tend to be cheaper than Apples, there's a good variety of handsets available, and word of mouth will be helping it along too. However, it's proving less successful at attracting existing smartphone owners.
Many among this group will be iPhone owners, who are likely to stick with the brand. The worry for Google and its partners is that punters try Android, find it wanting and look elsewhere when they upgrade.
How this situation goes from here on is anyone's guess. Android's evolution may ensure punters stick with it, and it will grow both its first-time buyer and existing smartphone owner market share at Apple's expense. But if Apple can keep ahead with innovative and/or gimmick features, it can ensure buyers will migrate to it. ®
And the winner is?
"Android's evolution may ensure punters stick with it, and it will grow both its first-time buyer and existing smartphone owner market share at Apple's expense. But if Apple can keep ahead with innovative and/or gimmick features, it can ensure buyers will migrate to it."
Another futurologist predicted "if it doesn't rain by sunset it will be dark before the morning"
What bug ridden Android user experience? I'm on my second Android phone and have yet to encounter it.
GSCE Stats: Grade U
The hypothesis may be true but there is no evidence here to support it.
The stats apply to two different types of buyer. The smartphone repeats are by definition frequent repeat buyers. With Apples initial lead in this market the numbers don't look so good, even bad.
Whereas the newbies are taking their first step in the market and most an Android step. We have no evidence of how many are swopping OS or even in which direction.
Please don't try and squeeze an agenda citing evidence that ain't there ....
I went from a bug ridden iphone4 that needed rebooting so many times it became a daily ritual, to a SGS2 which is rock solid and runs rings around the iphone. Does my experience now cancel out yours and bring us back to neutral?
It's one thing to use cherry-picked data to build a case supporting one's bias...
But quite another to take data from another group and applying bad logic to support your bias. The stats, unless there is more in the NPD survey than reported, do not support the basis of the article. With the data presented, it states that in Q4'2011, people who never owned a smartphone were more likely to buy an Android-based phone than any other, while people who already owned a smartphone were... more likely to buy an Android-based smartphone, albeit at a lower percentage.
However, there are no listed statistics to back up the assertion that people who owned an Android-based phone were turning away from the OS to purchase an iPhone. Comparing two disparate groups and stating that it demonstrates any kind of movement away from the Android is low IQ at best, outright pandering to Apple at worst. The only conclusion you can take is what is presented, which is that Android is winning the mind and market share of those who are new to smartphones, while Apple, with a head-start in the smartphone biz, is holding 43% of all upgrades.
A more salient question that would actually answer the question of loyalty is to compare pre- and post-upgrade phone choices. Only if after looking at the data and see iOS with a larger share of the post-upgrade user base than the pre-upgrade, could you conclude that Android has a problem retaining users. Until that happens, all we can conclude with the data in this article is that the author fails basic comprehension of statistics. And if the information was present in the NPD survey and was not included in the article as the basis for the conclusion, it shows that the author fails basic journalism.