Pleasure and pain
The latest market share figures for smartphone operating systems (OS), from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, show that in the latest 12 week ending sales to 12th June 2011 Android is now the top OS in 6 countries having edged past Symbian in Spain.
Despite talk of intense competition between the different smartphone platforms for customers, growth in Great Britain continues to be driven by consumers upgrading from non-smartphones rather than switching between OSs. 74.3% of Android’s new sales came from the non-smartphone market compared with only 1.4% of customers who previously owned an iPhone.
Global Consumer Insight Director, Dominic Sunnebo comments: “We are yet to see any real signs of consumers switching between Android and Apple. Our data shows that Apple and Android’s customers are intensely loyal when choosing their upgrade. One reason for this is the investment consumers make in their device through apps. In France for example, the average iPhone costs €215, and 17% of iPhone owners download more than 10 apps each month. This investment is then lost if they want to choose a different OS as the apps are non-transferable.”
As a result of growing competition, Apple lost market share in Great Britain this period; it now holds 18.3% in comparison with 30.6% for the same period last year. However, the iPhone 4 has been the top selling Smartphone for the last 12 months.
BlackBerry market share continued to grow in Great Britain - hitting 22.9% in the latest period. The strong appeal of the brand to the youth market shows no signs of abating, with 35.6% of customers aged 16-24. BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) use is key amongst this younger consumer, with 70% of BlackBerry owners, aged 16-24, using the BBM app in the latest four weeks.
Dominic adds: “With 63% of British consumers still owning a non-smartphone, future growth lays with upgrading customers. BlackBerry is currently attracting the most upgrading shoppers with 84.9% of its new customers previously owning a non-smartphone. Our data shows that most first-time smartphone owners look for lower prices. BlackBerry’s competitive pricing allows younger consumers to switch to a smartphone device at a price they can afford.
“However, a concern for brands targeting the lower end of the market is that once consumers have tried a smartphone they are prepared to spend more on their next device and could turn to other brands. With more and more consumers buying smartphones the future for middle-to-high-end smartphones is set to become ever more competitive.”
Although struggling in most countries, Symbian staged something of a comeback in France this period, losing only 3.9% of its share in the last 12 months, despite the French smartphone market growing by 75% year on year. As the second best selling smartphone in this market over the last 12 week period, the Nokia C7 has been instrumental in Nokia’s smartphone revival in France.
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Apple lost market share in Great Britain this period; it now holds 18.3% in comparison with 30.6% for the same period last year. However, the iPhone 4 has been the top selling Smartphone for the last 12 months.
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Consumer Insight Director
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