Android takes more than 80pc of global smartphone market, led by Samsung

14 Nov 2013

The latest market intelligence from analysts at IDC sees Google’s mobile operating system Android reaching more than 80pc global market share for the first time, while Apple seems to be suffering for its smaller screen sizes.

According to the Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, 261.1m smartphones shipped worldwide during the third quarter of 2013, representing a 39.9pc increase year-on-year.

Of these shipments, 81pc were Android devices, corroborating Strategy Analytics’ earlier figures attributing 81.3pc of the market to Android.

Among those operating in the Android space, Samsung still carves out the biggest slice of the pie with 39pc of all Android smartphone shipments in Q3, while most other Android manufacturers’ market share laments in the single digits.

Windows Phone also had a positive Q3, with shipments jumping 156pc year-on-year, giving the Microsoft OS just under 5pc of the overall market share. Nokia is by far the primary driver here, responsible for a whopping 93.2pc of all Windows Phones shipped in this period.

Appetite for Android and Windows Phone handsets is expected to continue, especially if they continue to offer affordable options. The average selling price of smartphones has dropped 12.5pc year-on-year to US$317, and demand for cheaper devices is growing.

IDC chart

Year of the phablet

A year ago, phablets accounted for 3pc of the overall smartphone market. Now, they are achieving more than one-fifth (21pc) of the share, and the rising popularity of these devices appears to have had a detrimental effect on one top smartphone-maker.

“We believe the absence of a large-screen device may have contributed to Apple’s inability to grow share in the third quarter,” said Ryan Reith, IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker programme director.

Apple’s iOS held 12.9pc of market share in this quarter, a 1.5pc decline on the same period last year. However, shipments rose from 26.9m to 33.8m.

IDC smartphone shipments

Source: IDC Worldwide Mobile Phone Tracker, 12 November 2013

Elaine Burke is the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. She was previously the editor of Silicon Republic.