Feeds

IDC: Android, iOS now own 91.1% of global smartphone sales

Two systems to rule them all

High performance access to file storage

The latest data on smartphone sales from analyst house IDC shows an increase in the reach of the global Android/iOS operating system duopoly, with RIM and Microsoft left squabbling over the scraps.

"The dominance of Android and Apple reached a new watermark in the fourth quarter," said Ramon Llamas, research manager with IDC's mobile phone team in a statement.

Last year over 497 million Android phones were shipped, an increase of over 100 per cent on 2011; Google's OS now accounts for 68.8 per cent of the market. The Chocolate Factory crew also had an excellent final quarter of the year, shipping nearly 160 million handsets during the holiday season.

Apple also has a lot to smile about, its share-price travails notwithstanding. For 2012, IDC estimates that Cupertino owned 18.8 per cent of the smartphone market – 135.9 million handsets – with the bulk of these being in high-profit Western economies. It seems the Apple Maps fiasco did little to deter buyers.

"Demand for Apple's iPhone 5 kept iOS out in front and in the hands of many smartphone users," said Llamas. "At the same time, lower prices on the iPhone 4 and the iPhone 4S brought iOS within reach of more users and sustained volume success of older models."

By contrast RIM – or BlackBerry, as it has since rebranded itself – has had a wretched year, with sales down 36.4 per cent on the year and 43.1 per cent in the last quarter. The delay of its new operating system until January of this year crippled 2012 sales, and the knock-on effect will carry through into the first quarter of 2013.

But BlackBerry is still ahead of Microsoft, which launched its Windows Phone 8 in October, boosting sales up 150 per cent in the last quarter of the year. But as Tracy Chapman noted in song, "Starting from zero got nothing to lose."

Microsoft's market share is below that of both RIM and Symbian for the whole of 2012, with the latter open source operating system managing 3.3 per cent of global sales in the year compared to Redmond's 2.5 per cent. This will almost certainly be the last time IDC tracks Symbian annual sales, and those early prophecies that Microsoft would be able to convert Symbian users en masse have proven to be nothing more than wishful thinking.

Linux meanwhile continues to maintain a toehold in smartphones, albeit under 2 per cent of the market. NEC and Panasonic switched their allegiances to Android this year, but newcomers K-Touch and Haier have brought out their own Linux smartphones. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Audio fans, prepare yourself for the Second Coming ... of Blu-ray
High Fidelity Pure Audio – is this what your ears have been waiting for?
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
Sorry London, Europe's top tech city is Munich
New 'Atlas of ICT Activity' finds innovation isn't happening at Silicon Roundabout
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Apple DOMINATES the Valley, rakes in more profit than Google, HP, Intel, Cisco COMBINED
Cook & Co. also pay more taxes than those four worthies PLUS eBay and Oracle
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
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.
SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.