Android remains on top in many regions despite iPhone 6 gains
Strong sales of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus have boosted Apple’s share of the European, US and Chinese smartphone markets, eroding Android’s recent dominance, according to latest figures from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech.
The launch of the iOS-powered devices has already been touted as the ‘biggest ever’ by the Cupertino-based company, which posted fourth quarterly revenues of $42.12 billion in October.
Ironically, the only country which saw its market share decline was Japan, which has traditionally been an Apple stronghold. Apple devices accounted for 53.8 percent of all those sold in the country, a drop from 69.9 percent year on year, but this was attributed to unusually high sales in 2013 after NTT DoCoMo decided to stock the iPhone for the first time.
Despite losing market share in Europe, and in the US for the first time since September 2013, the figures found that Android remains the most popular operating system in all markets but Japan.
In the US, iOS was present on 47.4 percent of all devices sold, edging nearer to Android’s 48.4 percent, while in Europe’s five biggest economies (the UK, France, Germany, Spain and Italy), Android commanded 56.8 percent, a fall of 3.2 points, compared to Apples 23.8 percent, a gain of 6.3 points, and Windows Phones’ 8.3 percent, a drop of 1.5.
In the UK alone, Apple increased its share from 30.3 percent last year to 42.5 percent as Apple’s fell by 6.7 percentage points to 49.7. Windows Phone’s recent decline continued and now accounts for 7 percent of the market, falling from 10.6 percent last year.
“Great Britain saw the strongest share decline for Android at 6.7 percentage points”, said Dominic Sunnebo, strategic insight director at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech Europe. “The longer the new iPhone models are on the market the more their appeal will extend beyond Apple’s loyal customers. For now customer switching from Android to iOS remains stable at 18 percent.”
However analysts pointed out that Android’s falling share did not prevent all manufacturers from finding success, with some – especially Chinese manufacturers like Xiaomi – benefiting regardless.
“A decline in Android market share does not necessarily translate into bad news for all the ecosystem’s players. The choice of brands and devices within the ecosystem empowers consumers to drive different fortunes for the players in it”, explained Carolina Milanesi, chief of research. “In the three months ending November, Samsung particularly felt the pressure and saw its market share decline across Europe and in the US. By contrast Motorola’s share grew thanks to the refresh of the Moto X and Moto G offering good value for the money.”
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