First quarter 2010 information from The NPD Group’s Mobile Phone Track reveals a shift in the smartphone market, as Android OS edged out Apple’s OS

Android Outsells the iPhone in America

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First quarter 2010 information from The NPD Group’s Mobile Phone Track reveals a shift in the smartphone market, as Android OS edged out Apple’s OS for the number-two position behind RIM.

Here’s how it plays out at the moment in the U.S. market:
Android

  1. BlackBerry: 36%
  2. Android: 28%
  3. iPhone: 21%

Here at MobilityNigeria, I have maintained that the OS that threatens Symbian is not Apple’s iPhone but Google’s Android. Android combines a fluid user interface with advanced functionality and wider reach than iPhone OS does. It is logical; isn’t it?

Well, here we go. Give Android a few more years and we’ll see.

Read the full report from NDP: Android Shakes Up U.S. Smartphone Market

27 comments

  1. In as much as I wish to applaud the android OS and the prediction of the news article writer on android, It is pertinent to point out that the Android OS phones consist of several phones from several manufacturers lumped up together. HTC, Motorola, SAMsung LG and others all produce several android phones each! No single android phone can match the sale of the iphone by Apple.

  2. I should also point out that the report by NPD appears to be unexpected. Just Friday last week here, IDC released its first-quarter market share data, placing Nokia and RIM atop the worldwide market, with 39.3 percent and 19.4 percent of the market, respectively. Apple finished third, with 16.1 percent, and HTC was fourth at 4.8 percent. Furthermore, Comscore, another research firm, have placed Android phones, at 10 percent just February here.

    How NPD got this data beats me. But should be correct. Other groups have consistently placed the Android OS phones third in the US and 4th worldwide in smartphone sales!

  3. Afewgoodmen,

    You err in not distinguishing the difference between mobile OS and device. This news item, and my prediction are about OS/platform marketshare, not device sales.

    Industry statistics benchmarks include OS marketshare: Symbian versus Windows Mobile versus Android versus RIM versus iPhone (OS, not phones) versus WebOS. That’s where this news item belongs.

    Kindly take another look at the news item again. Cheers.

    PS: Contrary to what iPhone fanboys often portray, there are three (3) iPhones, not one. And a fourth one is on the way. When calculating iPhone sales, each model needs to be treated as a distinct device. You might be surprised how different the picture really is.

  4. Afewgoodmen,

    Again, that error show up in your second comment on this topic. The IDC report that you present deals with mobile manufacturers marketshare, which is another segment of mobile industry reports, not mobile OS marketshare.

    The IDC report you present compares Nokia, RIM, Apple, and HTC. Those are manufacturers, some of which produce devices on different OS platforms.

    As for the Comscore report, which seems to be OS-based, you didn’t state whether or not the 10% Android placement in February was just for the U.S. or global, and whether it was for February alone or for the last quarter of 2009. Sales differ markedly from month to month, and quarter to quarter.

    Note that the NDP report states clearly “First quarter 2010” and mentions that this is statistics for the U.S. market only.

    Anyway, we will see what Canalys, IDC and others have to say about smartpohone OS marketshare for first quarter 2010 soon enough. We should be able to tell how reliable NPD’s statistics are.

    When reading reports, it is important to pay attention to the specifics or we might get the wrong picture entirely.

  5. @ Yomi. Your Points noted. Just a little correction. The original iphone is not officially in sales anymore. Just the 3G and 3GS. These analysis are talking about new sales of phone and not previous sales.

    I agree with you that the android Ecosystem is the next OS/platform to watch. It’s been doing so well. Where would Motorola be now without Google and Android?

  6. Afewgoodmen, you said:

    The original iphone is not officially in sales anymore. Just the 3G and 3GS. These analysis are talking about new sales of phone and not previous sales.

    Even at that, those analyses talking about new sales of phones still generally lump two different models (3G and 3GS) together and refer to their combined sales as the sales of one phone. As such, they are not presenting accurate statistics.

  7. Well… at the risk of talking about manufacturers and not OS’ again, I wish repeat Afewgoodmen’s point. Android OS being distributed across many handsets (over 20 by the end of 2009) while Iphone is restricted to Apples devices. It will be a miracle and a marvel if Iphone OS beats Android. Apple is too restrictive.

    From Accer to HTC, Dell,Huawei, Motorola,LG, Samsung, Sony Ericsson etc Android is marching on and coming to a phone near you!

  8. archie,

    Apple’s strict lockdown on the iPhone OS which has resulted in their phones being akin to works of art is also its Archille’s Heel.

    The iPhone OS never had a chance in hades that it would outsell Android or Symbian (though some keep harping about the iPhone OS killing off Symbian, and I wonder what they are smoking).

    Still, let us not forget that multiple manufacturers do not necessarily translate into a success. We were all spectators to the iPhone OS outgunning Windows Mobile (with all the different manufacturers) on the market.

    The thing with Android is that it has all the right ingredients to be a runaway hit. In a few years time, Android may pose a real threat to Symbian, considering its wide manufacturer base.

  9. ‘The thing with Android is that it has all the right ingredients to be a runaway hit. In a few years time, Android may pose a real threat to Symbian, considering its wide manufacturer base.’

    I couldn’t agree more.

  10. @Yomi Adegboye.

    “The iPhone OS never had a chance in hades that it would outsell Android or Symbian (though some keep harping about the iPhone OS killing off Symbian, and I wonder what they are smoking).”

    I just would have to differ slightly with this expressed opinion. For one, despite the fact that Apple operate a closed ecosystem, the Iphone sales have always surpassed the android, except for this quarter IN THE United States only. Worldwide, Apple iphone still does better than Android. Despite all the advantages of android as stated by Archie above. And people are still waiting for the launch of the next generation Apple in June! Perhaps by then the story would be different. Let’s keep our fingers crossed!

  11. Afewgoodmen,

    About iPhone OS sales having been ahead of Android so far, aren’t you conveniently forgetting that the iPhone 2G was released in June 2007, while the first Android device, the G1, was released in October 2008. That’s almost a year and half headstart.

    Don’t worry. I am not losing a minute’s sleep over how the marketshare battle between Android OS and iPhone OS will end. This one is too easy. I’ll devote my time to cracking harder nuts.

    Apple will have to change their strategy for the battle to end any different than as I have said it will.

  12. Agreeing with Yomi; It would be difficult or perhaps impossible for the iphone to beat Nokia in worldwide Smartphone sales just yet. Disagreeing; But concerning the Android, Iphone sales is better worldwide because of the multiplicity of careers in Eurpean countries. In the US, Only AT&T still sell the iphone in an exclusivitty deal that is rumoured to last till 2012! Even with these, Apple is still predicted to do better in sales in the forthcoming quarter especially after the launch of the new iphone ?HD.

    I think the ultimate evolution of the iphone would involve lesser restriction and mini-models would come up with time. At that time, they may be able to fence off Android from eating into their sales. What I’d call an iphone for everyone. Just as Nokia does. A Nokia for all!

  13. “The thing with Android is that it has all the right ingredients to be a runaway hit. In a few years time, Android may pose a real threat to Symbian, considering its wide manufacturer base.”

    Permit me everyone to make a point in this discussion. I am surprised everyone keeps ignoring the potential of the iphone. The restrictions are there by Apple quite alright, but this may not necessarily remain as strict as it is now. I believe they may evolve in tune with a changing market to allow them to remain all the more relevant. Nokia for instance is only one carrier but doing very well. Why? The Nokia brand is trusted. And they have won loyal customers.

    The iphone has won loyal customers the world over too. All that remains is to change their dance steps a little like Nokia did. Then the game would definitely change.

  14. Afewgoodmen and Bayoabu,

    No-one is ignoring the potentials of any OS. All of the available OSes have enormous potentials. Think of the power of Windows Mobile, the depth of Symbian, and the versatility of Android. Then there’s WebOS. How about Maemo? The rock-solid nature of the Blackberry OS? All awesome platforms.

    But for all their potentials, manufacturer policies bring in other factors. Unfortunately, we cannot sit around discussing “what if”.

    What if Apple throws iPhone OS open and lets other manufacturers license it?

    Okay, what if the Symbian Foundation releases an awesome new user interface that beats every other OS hands-down?

    What if Palm shifts their focus from the U.S. market to a global scale?

    Plenty story.

    We would be wasting our time discussing based on “possibilities”. We can only discuss based on current policies and realities on ground, and insert the smallprint stating that things can be different if a manufacturer changes their policies.

    It is that kind of small print that I alluded to in my earlier comment above when I said:

    Apple will have to change their strategy for the battle to end any different than as I have said it will.

    It is only that kind of shift in policy (a loosening of Apple’s restrictions) that will give the iPhone OS a chance of taking up more territory than Android.

    Having said that, Apple does not have a reputation of embracing that kind of openness. History is clear about that. Still, if they do a volte face, as some of you are hoping they will, things will get more interesting.

  15. nothing to argue about really.i understand this a survey that was pooled from 150,000 online respondents. the statistics is not reliable.

  16. data showing actual sales figures are more reliable. not some figures collated from some faceless individuals filling questionnaire forms on the internet.

  17. Mahogany,

    Now you make some sense. The difference between “not reliable” and “more reliable” is significant.

    And just to be sure, most surveys (which have generally proven to be reliable as indicators) are through questionnaires filled by faceless individuals on the internet anyway, so what’s your problem with that?

    Actually, most activity on the internet are by faceless individuals. That includes most of the posting on blogs and forums, including on MobilityNigeria. Does that necesarilly make the information posted unreliable? How would that apply to information posted by you, for example?

    No scrubs; just pointing out the flaws in your position.

    Anyway, like I already said, we wait for actual sales figures in the months and years ahead.

  18. I have to go with Yomi. Despite the fact that the actual sales are more definitive in verifying the market sales of a device, there is also a role for research, statistics, forcasting and so on. And in most cases, the forecast or statistics credibly predicts the outcome in sale. Ofcourse, with a slim margin of error. Give or take.

  19. Android is getting the result it wants because it operate an open-source business model unlike the closed, one-software-fits-all enviroment propagated by Aplle

  20. @Azeez Saheed. Perhaps you may be correct. Perhaps things may change significantly after the Launch of Microsoft Windows phone 7 at the end of the year and the Iphone ?HD by June. But mind you, most of the success does not altogether translate to massive overall profits or profit per device. Some promo in the US include buy one Android on contract and get one free. And so many manufacturers make the android phones and all these are involved in the NPD Research.

  21. @Yomi. Latest news on the Smartphone sales worldwide shows an interesting result. It is a report byGartner: Android Sales Now Exceed Windows Mobile. I wonder why you did not mention the full story as news here. Perhaps you could give your loyal readers a chance to report some Tech news on mobilitynigeria sometimes!

  22. The Breakdown is as follows;

    Gartner Says; “Worldwide mobile phone sales grew 17 percent in the first quarter to 314.7 million units. Of those, 54.3 million were smart-phones, a 48.7 percent jump from the same period one year ago.”

    Also, interesting Tidbits in the breakdown!:

    Symbian still leads the Smart-phone Sales with 44.3 percent market share (down from 48.8 in Q1 2009). BlackBerry OS devices come in second at 19.4 percent (down slightly from 20.6), while iPhone OS rings in third at 15.4 percent (up from 10.5 percent).

    While the beloved Android is now in fourth place at 9.6 percent (up from just 1.6 percent in Q1 2009), while Windows Mobile takes fifth place at 6.8 percent (down from 10.2 percent).

    Despite all the seeming advantages of Android phones, the iphone still does better.

  23. Perhaps you could give your loyal readers a chance to report some Tech news on mobilitynigeria sometimes!

    But our loyal readers already have the opportunity to do just that – either they create a new topic directly in the forums or they write out the news item and mail it in to be published as an article on the blog.

    Windows down. iPhone to go. Gartner’s report shows that Android’s growth rate is much higher than iPhone’s, meaning that if the trend persists, Android will catch up.

    But for now, we wait.

  24. yes, we wait. Android’s growth rate is phenomenon. Much like the iphone too. And perhaps the growth rate is higher than the iphone too. Only time will tell who will win the most heart of the consumers’ Smartphone market. So many more parameters may come into play with time.

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