Android ended 2013 as the top mobile OS across Europe with 68.6pc share, followed by Apple in second place with 18.5pc. Windows Phone’s share remained flat at 10.3pc.
“Android finished 2013 strongly, showing year-on-year growth across 12 major global markets including Europe, the US, Latin America, China and Japan,” explained Dominic Sunnebo, strategic insight director at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech.
“Apple has lost share in most countries compared with this time last year, but importantly it has held strong shares in key markets, including 43.9pc in the US, 29.9pc in the UK and 19pc in China.”
Sunnebo said Windows Phone has now held double-digit share across Europe for three consecutive months.
“Unfortunately for Nokia, the European smartphone market is only growing at 3pc year-on-year so success in this market has not been enough to turn around its fortunes – reflected in its recent disappointing results. Its performance also deteriorated toward the end of 2013 in the important growth markets of China, US and Latin America.”
After years of accelerated growth, Korean electronics giant Samsung is also coming under pressure in most regions, with European share down 2.2pc to 40.3pc, and China, where it ended the year with a flat marketshare of 23.7pc.
“It’s no surprise that everyone is concentrating on high-growth China, but currently local brands are proving clear winners. In December, Xiaomi overtook both Apple and Samsung to become the top-selling smartphone in China – a truly remarkable achievement for a brand which was only started in 2010 and sells its device almost exclusively online.
“The combination of high-spec devices, low prices and an ability to create unprecedented buzz through online and social platforms has proved an irresistible proposition for the Chinese,” Sunnebo said.
Interestingly, in Japan, Apple’s iOS has 68.7pc of smartphone sales – mainly due to Apple’s deal with Japan’s largest carrier NTT DoCoMo.