Android remains top dog in US and Europe, market share down however in the States

October 30, 2012
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If there’s one thing we love more than yanking Apple’s chain with humorous videos and snarky comments, that’s definitely hearing reports about how far ahead of iOS is Android globally.

One of our regular “suppliers” of such material is Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, a UK-based analytics company that has just come out with the Q3 2012 report for the mobile markets in the US, Great Britain and Europe as a whole.

Unsurprisingly, Android still clearly dominates all three markets, which is definitely reason for celebration, but the report is not all good and we have a couple of things to worry about, too.

First, the good news. Our favorite mobile OS has more than half of the total market share in the US, UK and the entire Europe, while iOS is the very distant second in all three rankings. The biggest gap is on The Old Continent, where Android crushes Apple’s mobile platform 67.1 to 16.5%.

That’s also where Android grew the most over 2012’s third fiscal quarter, from a market share of “just” 50.9% in Q3 2011. There’s good news on the UK front too, where Android had a smaller, but still very healthy boost of 4.8%, from 53.4 to 58.2.

Brits boosted iOS from 18.1% to 28%, which is still way behind Android’s market share, but a (small) reason of concern nevertheless. As for the States, the good news/bad news scenario repeats itself, though there is clearly a lot more of worrying to do here.

Android leads with 57.5% stateside, which is pretty good compared with iOS’s 35.7% share, but if we look at the year-on-year trend, things are not very promising. Apple’s platform enjoyed a very cool 14.2% increase year-on-year, while Google’s OS is down from 66.4%.

The causes of this rather unexpected fall? Well, believe it or not, Dominic Sunnebo, global consumer insight director at Kantar, thinks that the iPhone 5 is to blame. Although the company’s report included just one week of iPhone 5 sales, this is thought to have been enough to put iOS on that very encouraging upwards trend and Android on a downwards spiral.

“We can see that in markets with a large number of existing Apple customers, sales have already seen a significant boost. We expect this momentum to be fully realized in the next set of results. “ says Sunnebo, anticipating a far bleaker final quarter of 2012 for Android. Exactly how bleak we don’t yet know, but one thing is certain – Android will remain the leader no matter what, even if by a much smaller margin than before.

As for iOS and Android competitors, these have scored microscopic results all-around. RIM is number three in Europe and UK, with 5.9 and 8.8% shares, and number four in the US, with just 2.1%, while Windows is fourth in the former two ranks – 4.9 and 4.2% – and third in the latter, with 2.9%.

While the Blackberry makers are still on the fall everywhere, Windows is facing a progress, albeit a small one, increasing its share with 1.8, 4.2 and 0.2% in Europe, UK and the States. Not bad, but they’re still not serious competition.

Getting back to the Android vs Apple duel, we would love to hear your opinions on these fresh new numbers. Is Kantar’s report a reason of concern or celebration? How close could iOS get in Q4 2012 with the help of the iPhone 5?

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