iPhone & Android Gain Marketshare Through February

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Android and iOS both gained marketshare in the U.S. during the three months ending in February, as both platforms pushed other smartphone competitors further into the background. Google’s Android remains on top and officially took a majority share of 50.1 percent during the period, while Apple’s share increased to more than 30 percent, according to a comScore report released Tuesday.

The research firm compared the data to the three months ending in November of 2011, and found that smartphone ownership in the U.S. rose 14 percent to 104 million, with most of that growth coming from Android-based phones. Android grew 3.2 percent to hold a majority of market share at 50.1 percent. The figure below shows that Apple’s iOS also grew 1.5 percent during the same time, arriving at a 30.2 percent overall market share.

February 2012 comScore Mobile Platforms

Chart by The Mac Observer from comScore data.

Microsoft and struggling Research In Motion both fell, by 1.3 and 3.2 percent, respectively, although Microsoft is poised to regain share in the coming months as a result of the company’s aggressive marketing and pricing of Nokia’s flagship Lumia 900 phone. Symbian saw no change, maintaing its 1.5 percent share throughout the quarter.

comScore Top Mobile OEMs

Chart by The Mac Observer from comScore data.

Although iOS was outgrown by Android on an overall platform basis, Apple managed to outgrow its competitors from an OEM perspective. The Cupertino company rose 2.3 percent in the quarter to 13.5 percent of OEM production, as shown in the figure above. This data is for all mobile handsets, including feature phones and smartphones, though Apple’s share stems only from its iPhone line.

Apple’s growth allowed it to surpass Motorola, which fell 0.9 percent, and become the third largest producer of mobile handsets for the U.S. market. Samsung (25.6 percent) and LG (19.4 percent), still lead Apple.

Comments

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Quick math question: What percentage of new smartphones sold are Android phones?
(a) 50.1%
(b) Some number greater than 50.1%

Answer is (c), close to 60%. The 4S is not turning the tide, as so many here claimed it would before Christmas. And the plus-sized Android phones (Galaxy Nexus and Note, LG Spectrum) are driving growth now. Furthermore, almost all Android phones on Verizon are LTE capable. Not the iPhone 4S.

RonMacGuy

as so many here claimed it would before Christmas

OMG.  Do my eyes deceive me?  The worst prognosticator in the history of TMO actually has the gall to criticize others here?  LMAO.  The failed predictor of Apple impending doom is acting almighty?  This is too funny.  Thanks for the laugh, court jester.  I needed one after a long day.

So, where will the iPhone be “in about a year” oh mighty forecaster?  10% like you predicted once before?  How about the “declining and mostly irrelevant iPad”?  You predicted 40% market share once xoom and galaxy took off.  How are they doing?  Hanging your hat on amazon tabs now?

Good news is, no one here actually listens to you anymore.  We just read your dribble and chuckle.

Oh, and how is the android fragmentation picture these days?  1,443 devices out there running android, and most of them can’t even run the latest version. Pathetic, and getting worse by the day.  It’s fun to watch.

RonMacGuy

Ice Cream Sandwich powers 1.6 percent of Android devices?!?!?  Really?

I love this quote:  “The data also shows how fragmented Android is, and how far in the past some of the users are stuck. 62 percent of Android devices are running Android 2.3?2.3.7 ?Gingerbread? that released in December 2010, while another 25 percent are running Android 2.2 ?Froyo? which was released in May 2010.  Android 2.1 ?Eclair,? released October 2009, still powers 6.6 percent of devices, which is more than run Android 3.0 ?Honeycomb? and Android 4.0 ?Ice Cream Sandwich? combined.”

Intruder

And the plus-sized Android phones (Galaxy Nexus and Note, LG Spectrum) are driving growth now.

As they say on Wikipedia… Citation, please?

Furthermore, almost all Android phones on Verizon are LTE capable. Not the iPhone 4S.

And yet the iPhone is selling equal to all the Android phones COMBINED on Verizon (http://allthingsd.com/20120402/iphone-outselling-all-other-smartphones-combined-at-sprint-and-att/), Clearly the LTE capability isn’t driving people away from iPhones and to Android.

Your zealotry is absolutely amazing. You have become exactly what you accuse others here of being.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

And yet the iPhone is selling equal to all the Android phones COMBINED on Verizon

So why does the URL and the article talk about Sprint and AT&T? Talk about zealotry!

BTW, Intruder, the Galaxy Note has sold 5 million units cumulatively and the GN sold 1.7 million in 2011 (November and December). The GN figure comes from the Wikipedia page, BTW. You’re a reporter. I’m sure you could have dug that up quicker than getting on your high horse about it grin.

But again, you guys totally miss the plot about why 60%+ of people buying a smart phone choose Android. It’s precisely because there is so much choice in brands, form factors, feature sets, etc. That thing you call fragmentation is now dominating the market. Surely, it’s a problem you wish you had.

Martin Hill

Bosco, comScore is only counting current cellular subscribers.

However, Neilsen is counting new smartphone purchasers and guess what they found?

The percentage of new smartphone buyers in the USA purchasing Android smartphones inthe last 3 months has DROPPED from 56% 9 months ago to 48%.

In contrast, iPhone Marketshare has soared from 23% to 42% inthe same time frame.

gnasher729

But again, you guys totally miss the plot about why 60%+ of people buying a smart phone choose Android. It?s precisely because there is so much choice in brands, form factors, feature sets, etc. That thing you call fragmentation is now dominating the market. Surely, it?s a problem you wish you had.

The reason why 60% buy Android phones (if we believe your number) is people like my wife who just wants to make phone calls and has no interest at all in all these “smart” features but sees that a $80 phone looks nicer than a $20 phone, and doesn’t care one bit that the $80 phone is a smart phone with Android. There may be $600 phones that are looking even nicer (including the iPhone) but $600 is a bit much to pay for the looks.

Intruder

Bosco, you obviously didn’t read the linked article. Try actually going to the end of the second paragraph.

Also, did you actually read the citations in the Wikipedia article (not that wikipedia is worth the trons it takes to send it across the interwebs)? No? Well let me help you out…

From the cited article (The Guardian, 5 Jan 2012):

Roughly 42m Android devices using Google’s services were activated during December, according to calculations by the Guardian using data which suggest that there are now just less than 280m active “Google Android” devices.

Correction: The above figures are an overestimate. Google said that it had activated 200m devices on 16 October 2011; given that Andy Rubin, the head of mobile, stated that the rate of activations hit 700,000 per day in mid-December, it would be impossible for the number of activations to reach 280m.

The figures also suggest that about 1.7m Samsung Galaxy Nexus devices were sold in the month, as they are the only devices presently available which run Android 4.0, or “Ice Cream Sandwich”.

Correction: this figure is an overestimate too as the total number of activations will be lower.

jfbiii

But again, you guys totally miss the plot about why 60%+ of people buying a smart phone choose Android.

I think WE get the plot quite nicely. They’re buying a phone and don’t really care if it’s smart or not.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

OK, Intruder, it’s time for a bet. Will the next comScore market share numbers show a reversal consistent with what you guys are saying? Or will the dumb sheeple continue to purchase more and more Android phones as a percentage of total sales?

Here’s the stakes… If the next floating comScore 3 month numbers show a decline in Android market share from 50.1%, I will be happy to cancel my TMO account and not return until 2013. However, if they show an increase, you will write me an apology for being an ass by dragging analyst estimates that have no foundation in reality into the discussion.

You up for this bet?

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

I think WE get the plot quite nicely. They?re buying a phone and don?t really care if it?s smart or not.

I know I’m wasting my time on you guys, but let me offer you an explanation as to why Android market share will continue to grow, while iPhone market share may remain strong, but in a clear second place. It comes down to this… For the masses, you do not need to shine a turd. The crappiest Android phone out there with Google apps installed, running FroYo (2.2) has these features:
* Makes calls, 3G data, WiFi
* Capacitive screen with face detection.
* Has a camera that most people can have fun with.
* Plays music and YouTube
* Plays all the popular word games just fine.
* Plays Angry Birds just fine.
* Plays all the unicorn and rainbow games that 7 year old girls love.
* Survives most accidental drops if you slap a gel case on it.
* Any 5 year old can pick it up and find a game to play. Any 7 year old can navigate the Google Play store.
* Almost forget… voice activated turn by turn spoken navigation with traffic overlays.

This might not be as magical as your iPhone or my Galaxy Nexus, but it’s pretty fraking incredible for most people. These are people who might have aspired to have an iPhone 2 years ago, and now, can afford something that far exceeds what that iPhone was 2 years ago, with lower up front costs, lower monthly costs, and better network coverage than 2 years ago.

But let’s say that small 3.5 inch display on the iPhone 4S is hard for you to see or you have fat or old fingers. You could just buy the 4.5 inch iPhone, right? Wrong, because Apple doesn’t make that. Samsung, LG, and HTC do make such phones that run Android. Say you’re on Verizon in one of their 4G/LTE markets and you like the idea of a 60 MB podcast downloaded to your phone in less than a minute. Your iPhone 4S works with that, right? Wrong. Meanwhile, in Android land, most manufacturers are on their 2nd generation of LTE phones.

Another dynamic to consider… If a family goes all iPhone, they basically all get the same phone, plus or minus Siri and internal Flash storage (ignoring the ancient 3GS on AT&T). If a family goes Android, they can mix and match size, price, camera, styling, skin, etc. And yet, they’d all have phones they could pick up and help each other with or play games on or whatever. That kind of choice is appealing to a majority of customers in all markets, and Apple just does not offer it. You can come at me with “choice paralyzes”, “it’s ugly”, “fragmentation”, etc. and that’s wonderful, except it is exactly what the market wants, and the Android ecosystem, open and competitive and messy. will always serve that market better than a closed, vertical solution from Apple, Microsoft/Nokia, RIM, or anyone else.

Intruder

Bosco,

You seemed to have dodged the fact that the data you quoted was, in fact, in error, per the citation in the very wikipedia article you referenced. You also dodged the fact that the article I cited in my first post does, in fact, discuss Verizon and not just AT&T and Sprint.

Stop trying to deflect with some “bet” and acknowledge that you made a mistake. Actually two mistakes.

Nice ad hominem btw, but you are the one that dragged in data that ended up having no foundation in reality.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

But the data I dragged in was material to my point, which is that diversity drives Android’s continued growing marketshare. So what if it’s off by a factor of even 2 either direction. Total Android sales are the summation of all these models, all these choices, call it “fragmentation” if it makes you feel superior. Also, the data I dragged in was relevant for the time period at hand.

The data you dragged in—some analyst culling estimates from sources that do not release this kind of real time data in order to justify a price target—doesn’t even apply to this time period, and frankly, is less than believable on Verizon based on my occasional visits to a store in a bustling LTE market.

The bet is no diversion. I don’t think you honestly believe that iPhone sales share is climbing. especially on Verizon where more than 10 phones kick the 4S’s butt in download speed. Prove me wrong. Please.

Intruder

Please show me where I made that claim?

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

You might as well be by not accepting that bet. The bet is a no-brainer if you truly believe what you’re spewing. I just don’t think you do. Thus the bet.

RonMacGuy

Hey Brad, I’ll take the bet.  Any chance to get you off TMO for 9 months is worth it.  You may be too big of a coward to admit when you are wrong, but I’m not.  So, what say you?

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

I don’t offer the bet to asshats, Ron. Sorry. Act like a civil human being and you may get your chance to write me an apology. Not today though.

RonMacGuy

LOL.  So let me get this straight.  You expect an apology from Intruder for “dragging analyst estimates that have no foundation in reality into the discussion” and even go so far as to call him an “ass” for doing so, yet your so-called “estimates” from a year ago that had “no foundation in reality” that you so arrogantly tossed out along with petty insults to the Apple “sheep” do not warrant similar expectations - i.e. you are an ass for dragging your own “estimates that had no foundation in reality into the discussion”?  So, what’s the difference here?  The fact that you are not an analyst?  Can you please explain to me why Intruder is an ass for using estimates with no foundation in reality but you are not an ass for your equally unfounded estimates?  I’m really trying to be civil here - my use of profanity is simply tying back to your prior use.  With all civility, I am just very confused with your approach here.

And for the record I never called you an ass for your estimates.  All I’ve ever wanted was for you to have the guts to apologize for being so wrong and at the same time so insulting to us.  Your estimate was for iPhone market share to be at 10% by end of 2011.  Your estimate was for iPad market share to be at 40% by end of 2011.  Whenever I bring it up, you simply ignore me, with the claim that I am being uncivil.  Yet you insult and call Intruder an ass.  I just don’t get it.

I may be an ‘asshat’ at times (not exactly sure what the ‘hat’ part has to do with it, are you not calling me an ass but simply a hat for an ass?) - I will admit that I am both an ass and an asshat at times, but you are a total and complete hypocrite.  Pure and simple.  I say that in the most civil way possible.

But please, just explain the difference to me here.  I simply seek knowledge and understanding.

Intruder

Heh. I’m still trying to figure out exactly what I’ve been “spewing”, since I don’t recall taking any particular stance. I only posted something that was counter to Bosco’s (flawed) data. I believe TMO (of which I am NOT a staff member nor journalist), has pretty clearly stated that Android will hold more market share than IOS. I have also stated in the past that I also believe that to be the case (and also that I really couldn’t care less).

How, exactly, does an ass wear a hat, anyway?

RonMacGuy

How, exactly, does an ass wear a hat, anyway?

There must be a strap involved I think.  “Hey Honey, I’m going to play cards with the guys from work.  I’d like to wear my asshat - it’s a bit chilly outside, and I don’t want my ass to catch a cold.  Do you know where it is?”

I do love how Bosco went from iPhone market share dwindling to 10% to now saying stuff like, “iPhone market share may remain strong, but in a clear second place.”  Funny thing is, 1 in 3 people buy an iPhone, and the other 2 in 3 people buy one of dozens and dozens of android phones (1,443 separate android devices in history, and a dozen new ones coming out every few months).  But there still is that 1 in 3 buying an iPhone, even though it is smaller, doesn’t have 4G, etc. Oh, and the fact that Apple is in first place in “profit” market share which is what really matters to me.  Apple makes more profit from iPhone sales than the combination of android garbage out there.  Which makes Apple more profitable and pushes up stock prices, which makes me happy and able to buy more Apple products. Makes me happy.

And Bosco lays awake at night, wondering how 1 in every 3 people are still buying an iPhone with so many wonderful choices of android phones out there.  Dozens of android phones of all sizes, shapes, and colors, and only 3 iPhone models, some black and some white, none of which have easily replaceable batteries, all of which are locked into Apple’s walled garden, none of which are 4G capable, and all of them are a tiny 3.5” screen.  Yet Apple can’t keep up with demand.  1 in 3 buying Apple.  Why, oh why?

And it would appear Bosco is ignoring me again.  I guess he still can’t answer my simple questions.  Or maybe he just doesn’t like the answers.  Or maybe he is tired and cranky for staying up all night wondering why, oh why?

RonMacGuy

But please, just explain the difference to me here.  I simply seek knowledge and understanding.

Come on, Brad!!  We’re just having a little fun.  Don’t clam up on our account.

Autre31415

Regardless of any numbers at all Android will always win. It’s the iPhone against the world and it’s common sense that an operating system on a million different phones will surpass an operating system on one single phone. If they make 1000 android phones tomorrow and each unit only sells 1, then the iPhone needs to sell 1000 of their units in that same day just to match up to the new figure.

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