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Canalys: Android has almost half of global smartphone market, Microsoft has one percent

Aug 1, 2011 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 1 views

Canalys tracks smartphone sales in 56 countries around the world, and released a summary of its data for Q2 2011 on August 1. According to the firm, Google's Android operating system led in 35 countries and achieved a global market share of 48 percent.

Android, "the number one platform by shipments since Q4 2010," was shipped on 51.9 million phones during the quarter, a year-over-year increase of 379 percent, Canalys says. It put in a particularly strong performance in the APAC (Asia Pacific) region, garnering a 85 percent share in South Korea and a 71 percent share in Taiwan, the firm adds.

The 48 percent share for Android indicated by Canalys is very close to ABI Research's second-quarter global smartphone report, which put Android at 46.4 percent

With shipments of 20.3 million iPhones and a market share of 19 percent, iOS overtook Nokia's Symbian platform during the quarter to take second place worldwide. This made Apple the "world's leading individual smart phone vendor," stripping Nokia of its long-held leadership position, Canalys notes.

Canalys VP and Principal Analyst Chris Jones stated, "The iPhone has been a phenomenal success story for Apple and a watershed product for the market. It's an impressive success story, given that Apple has only been in the smart phone market for four years. With the next-generation iPhone anticipated in Q3, it's likely that Apple's position will grow even stronger in the second half of the year."

"The problem for Nokia is that demand for its Symbian-based smart phones has dissipated very rapidly, particularly in operator-led markets, such as Western Europe, where it's been strong in the past," added Canalys principal analyst Pete Cunningham. "It badly needs the first of its Windows Phone devices to launch as soon as possible to arrest a decline and, hopefully, silence its critics."

Initial Windows Phone 7 devices haven't made much of a mark, however, according to the market research firm. Fewer than 1.5 million Microsoft-based smartphones shipped during the quarter, equating to a mere one percent share of the global market, down 52 percent against shipments a year ago, according to Canalys.

We presume that by "Microsoft-based," Canalys is referring to Windows Phone 7 devices, and not counting sales of older devices still based on Windows Mobile. In a survey of sales for the first quarter of this year, Gartner had said 1.6 million Windows Phone 7 handsets were sold, compared to an apparent 2 million Windows Mobile units.

Cunningham added, "While [Nokia] is committed to launching a [Windows Phone 7] device before the end of the year, we do not expect to see it until mid-to-late Q4, and it will be much longer before a portfolio of Nokia Windows Phone smart phones drives volumes. Nokia is set to have several more difficult quarters before a possible reversal of fortunes."

Samsung underwhelms, as HTC builds U.S. share

Divvying market share up by manufacturer, Canalys says that Samsung, too, surpassed Nokia, with its flagship Galaxy S II smartphone (pictured) performing well. But, "its overall performance was underwhelming, considering the opportunities offered by the upheaval at Nokia," the firm stated.

Jones said, "Samsung has failed to fully capitalize on Nokia's weakened state around the world, as the Finnish company rides out a challenging transitional period. It's the best-placed vendor to grow at Nokia's expense, taking advantage of its global scale and channel reach, but it hasn't yet done enough to capitalize on this, particularly in emerging markets."

Samsung was, however, the "largest Android device vendor," with shipments of its own-branded devices at 17.0 million units. Shipments of the Google Nexus S and T-Mobile Sidekick 4G added an additional 0.7 million, Canalys says.

Windows Phone OEM partner HTC saw Android driving the vast majority of its portfolio, but Canalys expects it to continue to be a leading provider of Windows Phone products. HTC achieved particular success in North America during the quarter, climbing to a 21 percent share, while Apple's North American share dropped from 31 percent last quarter to 25 percent this quarter.

Finally, RIM had a challenging quarter in North America, with its market share slipping to 12 percent, down from 33 percent a year ago, leading to negative press coverage in the United States. But RIM's global shipments grew 11 percent year on year, keeping it the number one vendor in Latin America with a 28 percent share.

Globally, the smartphone market grew 73 percent year-on-year, with in excess of 107.7 million units shipping in the second quarter of 2011, says Canalys. The research firm adds that APAC remained the largest regional market, with 39.8 million units shipping there, compared with 35.0 million in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), and 32.9 million in the Americas.

Further information

The Canalys statement summarizing its Q2 2011 smartphone research may be found on the company's website.

Separately, an analysis by the Seattle Post-Intelligencer suggests that $613 million is the most Microsoft possibly could have made from Windows Phone during the fourth quarter of its 2011 financial year. Blogger Nick Eaton reached this conclusion simply by subtracting Xbox 360 profits from those reported by the company's Entertainment and Devices (EDD) division.

Jonathan Angel can be reached at [email protected] and followed at

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