By Daniel Hunter
While the Smartphone sales market has remained relatively stable to date this year as compared to last, increases in share of sales for iOS (up 2.3 percentage points) and Windows (an increase of 1.8 percentage points) have seen these platforms growing slightly faster than Android (up 1.4 percentage points), year on year, according to data released by Kantar Worldpanel ComTech.
Through the 3 month period ending April 2013, Android now owns more than half (51.7%) of the smartphone sales market,. iOS remains in second place with 41.4% of smartphone sales, while Windows’ smartphone sales share remains at 5.6% - compared to last month - but has grown over the last year by 1.8% points. Positive movement can also be seen across carriers, too, particularly by leader Verizon with 36.3% of smartphones sold (1.8% points increase) and Sprint Nextel with 13.1% of smartphones sold (1.4% points increase). AT&T, in second place, remains stable at 26.3%, while T-Mobile declines to 11.3%.
The data is derived from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech USA’s consumer panel, which is the largest continuous consumer research mobile phone panel of its kind in the world, conducting more than 240,000 interviews per year in the U.S. alone. ComTech tracks mobile phone behavior and the customer journey, including purchasing of phones, mobile phone bills/airtime, and source of purchase and phone usage. This data is exclusively focused on the sales within this 3 month period rather than market share figures. Sales shares exemplify more forward focused trends and should represent the market share for these brands in future.
Kantar Worldpanel ComTech analyst Mary-Ann Parlato states, “Verizon and Sprint’s slight increase is thanks to the growth of two key players. For Verizon, Windows’ share rose from 0.2% in the three months ending April 2012 to 6.8% by the period ending April 2013. At Sprint, they continued to reap share increases thanks to their iOS offering- iOS sales share on Sprint grew from 33.4% to 38.4% over the last year.”
Windows has begun to capture consumers from across the competitor set. Of those who purchased a Windows device in the last year, 42% came from a featurephone device, 25% from another Windows device and 23% from Android. While iOS is similarly effective at capturing Android users and their own users, only 31% came from a featurephone device, showcasing Windows strength in attracting featurephone users.
“But it’s not just about capturing the market that is yet to upgrade. Windows is also seeing success in the younger group. When looking at those who changed device, between 2011 and 2012 Windows was more successful at capturing older consumers aged 50-64. But when looking at those changing now and in the last year, we’re seeing Windows now gaining share among those aged 25-34.” Parlato continues.
Looking at specific sales of smartphone devices, for the 3 month ending April 2013, Nokia’s Lumia devices were the key models driving success for the Windows OS.
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