Kantar: Windows Phone gains market share in US and Europe in Q2 2013

Sales of the Nokia Lumia 520 are part of the reason for the rise in Windows Phone sales, according to Kantar.

Microsoft has been hyping up the growth of Windows Phone lately, with company executives saying it is now the firm third mobile OS in sales, behind iOS and Android. While Windows Phone still has a lot of catching up to do to get to the level of Apple and Google's operating systems, new reports from the research firm Kantar WorldPanel claim to show big year-over-year gains for Windows Phone in the second quarter of 2013.

In the United States, Kantar claims that Windows Phone has gone up to 4 percent in the smartphone market, up 1.1 percent from the same period a year ago. Android is still number one with a 51.3 percent share with iOS in second place at 42.5 percent.

However, Windows Phone has seen bigger gains in parts of Europe. In a separate press release, Kantar states that in the UK, Windows Phone now commands 8.6 percent of the smartphone market in the second quarter, up from 4.5 percent from the same period a year ago. There's an even bigger jump in France, where Windows Phone holds nine percent of the market share, up from just 2.3 percent a year ago.

In its report for Europe, Kantar said that sales of low end Windows Phone devices, such as the Nokia Lumia 520, were part of the reason for the sales upsurge for Microsoft's OS. The report stated:

Selling large volumes of lower end smartphones is a good way of getting Windows seen in the hands of potential customers’ friends and family, convincing them there isn’t a risk in choosing the operating system. The majority of people are trend followers, not trend setters, so Windows needs to get as many smartphones to market as quickly as possible.

Earlier this month, the mobile app ad provider AdDuplex stated that the Lumia 520 was now the most popular smartphone on its network, and today's report would seem to confirm that this cheap Windows Phone device is selling well.

Source: Kantar WorldPanel

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13 Comments

Good news for Nokia and MS. Now if MS can get updates to the handsets that actually include the features users want, things will start looking up.

ahinson said,
Good news for Nokia and MS. Now if MS can get updates to the handsets that actually include the features users want, things will start looking up.

They need to get the apps users want. Most users don't care about any features that WP doesn't already have. Only tech nerds like us complain about features in the OS. Regular users want Instagram, Vine, etc.

Obry said,

They need to get the apps users want. Most users don't care about any features that WP doesn't already have. Only tech nerds like us complain about features in the OS. Regular users want Instagram, Vine, etc.

Everyone wants basic phone features that WP8 still lacks, not just "nerds". I hear average people/friends complaining all the time who use WP, often about the stuff mentioned in the comment above. It's also put me off going to WP.

The WP team need to get off there arses and add stuff. They need to look at the Windows team. Look at all the stuff Win 8.1 has already added in LESS time, and not just the simple UI features and tweaks, but even a new kernel, new DirectX and 500+ new API's.

Another thing to remember is Windows Phone updates are throttled by 2 factors:

- limited dev team size compared to Windows
- carrier testing

CygnusOrion said,
Another thing to remember is Windows Phone updates are throttled by 2 factors:

- limited dev team size compared to Windows
- carrier testing

I hope the first issue is fixed by the merger of the Windows and Windows Phone teams. I suspect this will mean both under the hood and visual unification. So the new Windows team will improve two versions of the same OS at the same time.

Indrectly this could free them of carrier testing as well. The non-phone version of Windows also dont have carrier testing. Perhaps the CEO of Windows can convince carriers of the experience the Windows team has with testing.

Obry said,

They need to get the apps users want. Most users don't care about any features that WP doesn't already have. Only tech nerds like us complain about features in the OS. Regular users want Instagram, Vine, etc.

I think both are stil lacking. The OS misse basic features that also make existing apps weak on the feature side and means other apps cant easily be brought to the platform. A good example of this is video support in Whatsapp. It almost doesnt exist because of an OS limitation.

Overall the access to files is extremely limited on Windows Phone. This is a much needed OS improvement. Luckily Windows 8.1 will bring a lot of improvements in this field. And now that WP is part of the Windows Team I suspect the same freedoms will be added to WP.

Ronnet said,

I hope the first issue is fixed by the merger of the Windows and Windows Phone teams. I suspect this will mean both under the hood and visual unification. So the new Windows team will improve two versions of the same OS at the same time.

Indrectly this could free them of carrier testing as well. The non-phone version of Windows also dont have carrier testing. Perhaps the CEO of Windows can convince carriers of the experience the Windows team has with testing.

The first issue should be fixed but the transition/reorgs effects won't be felt for a bit of time still, probably 2014 will start to show signs. As for the apps, those are coming more and more, with Nokia selling more Lumias each quarter, and market share going up as we're seeing, then devs will start to bring their apps over more and more.

As for OS updates, it's still the carriers fault really, they're just control freaks and would rather sell you a new phone over and over. I wonder if the change some are doing where you pay a bit more and get a new phone each year will change things? Anyways, MS knows carriers drag their feet and will not be willing to do, say, 3 OS updates in 8-12 month time frame. So now MS is forced to work on 1 or 2 bigger updates per year to work around the carrier problem.

Look at the news that GDR3 is going to get things from 8.1 in it, if this is the case then it holds true that MS is just going to stick to the 1-2 bigger updates per year cycle. Maybe one early in the year and the 2nd late around the holiday time? There's just no way they can push through 3 or more updates at this point. Maybe if that US market share goes up to double digits it'll be less of an issue, but that's going to take time.

very good news indeed. I wish the best place for the best and most stable mobile OS . It might not have as many apps or as much sophisticated as ios or android but it is for sure the most stable ones. had lumia for a year, never ever had a single crash.

REM2000 said,
Must admit ive started to see more and more nokia's on my daily commute into London,

Agree. A colleague bought a new HTC 8x for AUD 200. I was shocked to hear the price, but at the same time this is good as we need more handsets. He came to me asking about Windows Phone as I am one of the few who has one (Lumia 920). Gave him both plus and minus points about the OS and left the choice upto him. But 200 bucks for a high end LTE enabled phone is an effing good deal wherever you go.

It helps that the EU carriers don't really mind testing and pushing out updates more often compared to their US counterparts. Still, at some point, if the US share keeps going at a nice pace, they'll have enough volume to be able to push for more updates.

That or maybe just break the apps off from the core OS, though they're tied into it so that could be tricky, so we can get updates to them and not have to wait for the OS. Now we need to wait for WP 8.1 to get mobile IE 11 for example, or a update to mail and people etc etc.

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