Apple’s iPhone Gains on Google’s Android & Samsung

| News

Apple's iPhone gained ground in the U.S. on Google's Android platform and Samsung as a hardware maker during September, according to market research firm comScore. While Android and Samsung both posted their own gains during the month, Apple gained more share than either.

Apple, Google, and Samsung were also the only firms to gain ground at all, meaning that they did so at the expense of all other competitors. Research In Motion and Microsoft both lost share in the smartphone platform market, while LG, Google's own Motorola Mobility unit, and HTC all three lost ground as hardware makers.

comScore's reporting is unique in the market share industry because the company measures subscriber share, rather than share of new devices sold. In that Apple's devices generally have a longer lifespan than competing devices, subscriber share doesn't necessarily directly correspond to market share as measured by new sales.

These numbers do matter to some industry watchers and analysts, however, especially those more focused on wireless carriers. Subscriber share also reflects mindshare, at least to a certain extent.

The chart below shows subscriber share by platform for the three months ending June 12, 2012 compared to the three month period ending September 12, 2012. In that period, Google's Android platform grew from 51.6 percent to 52.5 percent of the market, an increase of 0.9 percent.

Apple's iPhone platform grew from 32.4 percent to 34.3 percent, an increase of 1.9 percent. Research In Motion's BlackBerry took it on the chin with a 2.3 percent decrease, while Microsoft decreased 0.2 percent. Nokia Symbian, which was canceled in 2011, also saw its tiny share eroded.

comScore Chart

Chart by The Mac Observer from comScore data

Next, we have share as broken down by Vendor. These numbers are for the entire mobile handset market, which includes feature phones. Apple was third place with 17.5 percent of the market, even though it competes solely in the smartphone market. That represents a 2.1 percent increase over the prior period.

Samsung retained its number one spot with 26 percent, an increase of 0.4 percent. LG remained in second place position, but just barely. The company's share declined by 1.1 percent, and comScore noted that Apple has been closing in on LG.

comScore Chart

Chart by The Mac Observer from comScore data

Popular TMO Stories



You seem to fail with statistics and numbers pal, nice misleading headline and article, nice dishonest spining/lying on the comcast numbers. Some people have no really shame when it comes to be crass propagandists and liars… Pathetic.



Bryan Chaffin

Hi Me, I’m sure it suits your preferred narrative to assume I’m a liar, but I have 14 years of publishing history that says I approach my job honestly and with integrity. If I made a mistake in this article, let me know what it is.

I’ve gone over it again and believe it to be accurate, but if I’m wrong, I will correct it.

You’d be surprised what a little civility and politeness might get you.


Bryan, there’s nothing wrong with your data, it’s just that it’s a little US centric and ignores other data from the same company which showed that iOS only gained on Android in two countries - the US and UK - and even here only just improved. Statistics about other nations paint a different picture, with Android improving its lead on iOS, in some cases soundly.

Further it ignores statistics from IDC showing Android had 75% of smartphone sales last quarter and outsold iOS 5 to 1.

Finally, it fails to address that Samsung sold 30 million Galaxy S3’s in the last three months, which is more than the total quarterly sales of iOS at 26.9 million for iPhone 4, 4s and 5.




Samsung shipped (in warehouses) vs Apple sold (in customers’ home).

Samsung according to IDC guesswork comprises to many many model of android phones.

Btw cheeps always sell better than high end ones - ask Walmart.


Cheapos not cheeps, sorry.

homes and not home.


@adamC have a read of the article I linked to. And specifically click the link about Samsung sell 30 million S3 handsets.

Yes, Samsung sold a lot of cheaper phones too, but they sold 30 million S3’s. They sold a lot more phones in three months then just 30 million.

I know that Apple will do well with the iPhone5. Heck, 5 million sold before anyone had read a hands on review, but Samsung and Android are doing very well too, and any Apple fan that buries their head in the sand, hiding behind old data and only reads statistics one way might wonder what happened and how?

Macobserver do a great job presenting a Mac view of things, but sometimes it’s important to hear that whole story too.


It is hilarious when Apple fans get so hurt that Android is more popular than iphone. They start that pompous “cheap phone” argument while forgetting that you can get an iphone for free on contract. The prices of premium iphones and Android phones are no different. It’s also funny because these same people actually can’t afford to buy the phone directly, so they wait until their contract is up to use the carrier discount to bring the phone down to a price they can afford. That makes them hypocrites, in addition to being sad jealous trolls.


To the cheap comments—yes, Android is probably outselling iPhone substantially in no small part to the low and mid-range devices.  But the flagship Android models are hardly cheap.  The unlocked GS3 is just as expensive (or more) than the iPhone 5.

The apt comparison would be between top-tier models (GS3, etc) and iPhone 5.  I’m guessing together they still eclipse iPhonne.

Count me among the converted—just ditched the iPhone 4 for the GS3.  No regrets.


Let’s wait a comparison shall we after January 1, 2013? The numbers above are misleading and clearly the writer is leaning on Apple’s side. In January 2013 we shall see how Apple is doing compared to their competitors since it would give the market ample time to gauge the success of the iPhone 5—especially since consumer confidence in Apple has dropped over 10% in North America over last year!

Log in to comment (TMO, Twitter or Facebook) or Register for a TMO account