Analyst: 1 million Windows Phones sold in the US in 2012, seems dubious

Microsoft has been deceptively quiet on the sales of Windows phone device since the platform was first introduced a few years back. Since the announcement, the company has avoided giving hard sales figures for the public to adore over and many believe that is because the platform has not been selling well.

While Microsoft has given a few hints that Windows Phone 8 has been doing better than Windows Phone 7, one analyst is claiming that only 1 million Windows Phone devices were sold in the US for 2012. This number, if true, would almost certainly be below Microsoft’s expectations especially after the launch of Windows phone 8 in Q4 of last year. But the problem is, the numbers don’t add up.

Now, seeing that they are stating 1 million in sales for all of 2012 for the US, we have to begin to question the numbers. Why, you say? Well, Nokia said that they had 700,000 sales of devices in the North American market in Q4 and while the NA market for Nokia is made up of more than the US, surely a substantial of those came from the US and that is only one quarter of the year.

If you then look at Q3, Nokia stated that they sold 300,000 phones in NA and when you start to think about that this is one vendor (albeit the largest Windows Phone producer), the above figures begin to not seem plausible, but down right laughable as the firm must not have done their research into the publically available figures.

So, did Microsoft sell more than one million Windows Phones in the US? It seems highly likely that this is the case as the numbers from Nokia alone look to prove the analyst wrong and that’s not including Samsung and HTC, who are also selling phones in the US. In addition, the HTC 8X was said to be selling well in the US and was listed as out of stock several times across a few different e-tailers. 

The interesting thing about Windows Phone is that it has been receiving great reviews across the board. Despite being loved by the tech bloggers, it has yet to be adored by consumers on a scale that even comes close to rivaling Apple or Google.  While Microsoft has the bankroll to support Windows Phone until it becomes a mainstream product, the question of how long this will take remains unanswered.

But for the 1M number for total sales in the US in 2012, the math doesn't add up.

Source: Telecompaper.com

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You know, I used to LOVE my WebOS Palm Pre too...but it wasnt a viable platform anymore than WP is. WP is a dead platform, full stop. No one trusts Microsoft to make a decent phone...the landscape is littered already with their failures, Kin, Windows Mobile, Windows Phone 7. What makes you think ANYONE with half a brain is going to buy a phone with a Windows logo on it at this point?

John Nemesh said,
You know, I used to LOVE my WebOS Palm Pre too...but it wasnt a viable platform anymore than WP is. WP is a dead platform, full stop. No one trusts Microsoft to make a decent phone...the landscape is littered already with their failures, Kin, Windows Mobile, Windows Phone 7. What makes you think ANYONE with half a brain is going to buy a phone with a Windows logo on it at this point?

Actually I still consider my "ancient" HD2 with WM 6.5.3 the best phone I ever had; powerful, versatile and flexible. I do not mind my Lumia 920 but....

"The interesting thing about Windows Phone is that it has been receiving great reviews across the board. Despite being loved by the tech bloggers, it has yet to be adored by consumers on a scale that even comes close to rivaling Apple or Google."

Thats how Android started as well.

Kunal Nanda said,

Thats how Android started as well.

Except that Androids market share exploded after its first year while WP has been out for 2.5 years and MS mobile market share in North America has DECLINED

ive also seen a fair number recently in Canada. lets not forget we are just talking about the US market here and not north America. Nokia has never had a strong presence in the US. Outside of the US WP is actually doing extremely well. Worldwide the marketshare is only going up. The US in not the be all to everything you know, there is more to this planet than just overweight US teenagers buying phones. As I live n Canada the US really means absolutely nothing to me and is starting to turn into a very poor distant relative or a relative.

I really don't mind Nokia, but Microsoft just seems too scared to steamroll wp.
They could be adding so much more, yet they are hesitant because they don't want to make it too confusing...
Hey MS, if android sells this well for being complicated, im sure wp won't be hurt by adding more interesting functionality.

I see a fair number of them here in Ireland, at least since Nokia came to the market, Nokia still has a great reputation over here and since the Lumia 800 they have really sold well.

It's rare, but I've seen a few. Having said that, there is a quite substantial difference with the number of devices you see in the wild in the US vs Europe.

Xenon said,
To be honest I have never seen a windows phone in the wild.
Of course, it's not like everyone goes around flashing their phone around. I've seen a few HTC 8X and Lumias around (the HTC is more common tho). They are also easier to notice due to their flashy colours (especially Lumia's white)

Xenon said,
To be honest I have never seen a windows phone in the wild.

I see them all the time. They're quite popular with students at RIT.

tanybeen said,
It's rare, but I've seen a few. Having said that, there is a quite substantial difference with the number of devices you see in the wild in the US vs Europe.

I'm going to say that's true.. here in the UK, where I live at least.
I see a lot of Lumia phones. I guess because they're easier to spot due to their design, but over Christmas period the Nokia phones were sold out in a lot of the phone shops.

What's weird thinking about it now, it doesn't seem to be the kids that have them, it's mostly the adults. I don't watch TV or read the magazines so I can't really say were the adverts are targeted, but it certainly seems like it's more of an adult/serious smart phone rather then a toy.

Still, I see a lot of them in use when walking around the city/shops etc the *are* out there

Xenon said,
To be honest I have never seen a windows phone in the wild.

See 'em all the time here in Dallas-Fort Worth.

I have seen a couple at my university. I did recall prior to WP8, meeting 3 people with WP7 phones, 2 were disliking the phone (I think based on a features/app aspect) and the other loved his phone (Dell Venue Pro) and also toted a Zune HD.

I think I've seen maybe 5 people with some type of WP since the launch of WP8.

I had never seen anyone else with one either. I was the first to get a Windows Phone in my office. After getting a Lumia 920, one coworker ordered one as soon as he saw mine. Two weeks later, another followed. The platform needs more exposure. Once people see it, they tend to love it. My wife will get one once Instagram is released...

Nokia said that they sell 1 million devices in Q3 and Q4 and in all North America, it usually includes Canada and Mexico. Also, it does not mention if all devices were WP or not.

But, let's say that Nokia sold 1 million WP in USA.

For WP, Nokia is about 70-80% of the WP share. So, the real number of unit sold it should be about 1.3 millions units.

If the analysts said that MS sell 1.0 million versus 1.3 millions then, the estimation (for this case) is accuracy, in the sense to conclude to say that WP8 is not selling so well.

Blackberry sold numerous devices over a period of time, current and upcoming devices. The 1 million number means squat really. The 1 million devices is not a number that was sold to consumers only to a mobile provider for current and upcoming devices probably spread out over a year or so.

I think WP is in. Great position. Their os kernel is set and won't change and soon it will merge completely with the desktop, whereas android and apple have yet to fully roadmap this. MS is the tortoise and apple,droid the hare.

mrdeezus said,
MS is the tortoise and apple,droid the hare.

Even if Apple and Google pulled out of the smartphone business altogether Microsoft would struggle to increase its market share.

theyarecomingforyou said,

Even if Apple and Google pulled out of the smartphone business altogether Microsoft would struggle to increase its market share.


Why? before they did MS held 40% of the smartphone market. With close to zero effort.

Shadowzz said,

Why? before they did MS held 40% of the smartphone market. With close to zero effort.

I always loved WM; it was powerful and flexible. I still have WM 6.5.3 on my HD2 and it is great. The Honeycomb icons look much better than the iPhone grid although this is a matter of,personal preferences.

Kind of curious how this is going to change this year. With Apple really not wowing anyone for a long time now, could be the right time for WP to step in. I am sure it will be an interesting year.

Well if you read the Nokia results they state 0.7 smartphones not just Lumia devices, so there could be a proportion of Symbian or Asha. Just based on numbers Lumia could be 2/3 of 700,000 or 1/4.

Depicus said,
Well if you read the Nokia results they state 0.7 smartphones not just Lumia devices, so there could be a proportion of Symbian or Asha. Just based on numbers Lumia could be 2/3 of 700,000 or 1/4.

I don't believe either Symbian or Asha is available in NA, so the figures for WP would be correct.

hmm.. Microsoft is always postponing the year of the WP, they said 2011 then 2012, now 2013 but it was already dead on arrival so... It's too obviously, WP will never be a significant mobile OS.

yowanvista said,
hmm.. Microsoft is always postponing the year of the WP, they said 2011 then 2012, now 2013 but it was already dead on arrival so... It's too obviously, WP will never be a significant mobile OS.

didn't know selling millions of phones = dead.

auziez said,

didn't know selling millions of phones = dead.


Exactly. These trolls are really irritating. I've never seen a troll community with as much free time as the WP Trolls... Surely one or two of them must have lives, right?

Are the people that comment here brand new to the internet? because they obviously have no idea what a troll is...its not someone how has a different opinion then yours....learn to internet

Fritzly said,

I wonder why MS does not react to such negative publicity and release real numbers....


As with many major companies that will not be pushed into something, Microsoft does not believe in knee jerk reactions every time an analyst says something. If they did, they would have little time for anything else.

M_Lyons10 said,

As with many major companies that will not be pushed into something, Microsoft does not believe in knee jerk reactions every time an analyst says something. If they did, they would have little time for anything else.

Really? What is MS PR department, two people? Being the underdog they have to reassure developers and customers.
If you herald the amount of W8 copies sold and keep mum about WP and Surface sale numbers it is an admission that numbers are bad.

Fritzly said,

Really? What is MS PR department, two people? Being the underdog they have to reassure developers and customers.
If you herald the amount of W8 copies sold and keep mum about WP and Surface sale numbers it is an admission that numbers are bad.

ask apple how many iphone 5s they sold,or how many big ipads because they didn't release that info.

vcfan said,

ask apple how many iphone 5s they sold,or how many big ipads because they didn't release that info.


Besides the fact that the "public" mind Apple is not seen as the underdog in the market it is my understanding that Apple release, non disaggregated, sales numbers.

Ronnet said,
Never trust an analyst. Period.

Indeed. I see an analyst as having one of the luckiest jobs available, as all they're really tasked to do is make predictions within their respective industry, and they can't exactly be blamed if they're wrong. Analysts are like weather reporters on higher salaries.