Feeds

Android dominates first-time smartphone buyer biz

Apple strong in upgrade arena

Top three mobile application threats

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.

NPD US smartphone Q4 purchasing

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. ®

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

More from The Register

next story
Feast your PUNY eyes on highest resolution phone display EVER
Too much pixel dust for your strained eyeballs to handle
Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner hacked in just 4 DAYS
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
Microsoft lobs pre-release Windows Phone 8.1 at devs who dare
App makers can load it before anyone else, but if they do they're stuck with it
Report: Apple seeking to raise iPhone 6 price by a HUNDRED BUCKS
'Well, that 5c experiment didn't go so well – let's try the other direction'
Rounded corners? Pah! Amazon's '3D phone has eye-tracking tech'
Now THAT'S what we call a proper new feature
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
US mobile firms cave on kill switch, agree to install anti-theft code
Slow and kludgy rollout will protect corporate profits
AMD unveils Godzilla's graphics card – 'the world's fastest, period'
The Radeon R9 295X2: Water-cooled, 5,632 stream processors, 11.5TFLOPS
Sony battery recall as VAIO goes out with a bang, not a whimper
The perils of having Panasonic as a partner
NORKS' own smartmobe pegged as Chinese landfill Android
Fake kit in the hermit kingdom? That's just Kim Jong-un-believable!
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.