Windows Phone entrenches itself in third place in the US, grows faster than Android

Microsoft's Windows Phone operating system is by no means dominating any market, with the possible exception of Italy, but that doesn't mean its marketshare isn't steadily growing. The latest data shows that in the US it's actually growing slightly faster than Android.

According to the latest report from Kantar Worldpanel, Windows Phone accounts for 5.6% of all smartphones sold between January and March. This is up from the same period last year when the OS represented only 3.7% of sales. For comparison, Android has increased its lead by standing at 49.3% up from 47.9 while Apple's iOS dropped one percentage point to 43.7%. The biggest loser by far in this report is Blackberry that only accounted for 0.9% of all smartphone sales, down from a previous high of 2.9%.

Obviously this is good news for Microsoft as well as Nokia which, according to this report, has the most to gain from the growth of Windows Phone. Nokia now accounts for 4% of the device market up from 1% in the same period last year. The Finnish company has so far struggled with the North American market but this report might show that things are finally changing for them.

So who are all these new users of Windows Phone? The data shows that most of them, 52% to be exact, are first time smartphone buyers. Microsoft's UI styling with big obvious tiles and its focus on typography seems to appeal to first time smartphone buyers more than Apple's iOS does.

And considering that half of US mobile phone users are still using feature phones, there's a lot of potential for both Microsoft and Nokia to dominate the market if they get the execution right.

Source: Forbes | Image: Neowin (Tim Schiesser)

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

iTunes is losing market share to streaming services

Next Story

Cross-platform notification center Unification now available on Windows8/RT

60 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

actually when you have low marketshare it is very hard to gain without android and apple losing marketshare. Apple has peaked and im sure android is about to peak and both will slowly loose marketshare over the coming year or so.

The biggest hurdle to adoption rates is the number of people still locked into contracts with up to 18 months left to go on other systems.
I had to wait until last month to make the change economical although I wanted wp8 when it was released.

MeowPurr said,
HELLS YEAH! GO NOKIA!!

Don't you mean "GO WINDOWS PHONE!! "?

There are other manufacturers than just Nokia.

neo158 said,

Don't you mean "GO WINDOWS PHONE!! "?

There are other manufacturers than just Nokia.


Sincerely I only care about Nokia. HTC's and Samsung's efforts in WP have been quite poor, so I couldn't care less about them.

MeowPurr said,
Sincerely I only care about Nokia. HTC's and Samsung's efforts in WP have been quite poor, so I couldn't care less about them.

The article is about Windows Phone not Nokia specifically and TBH I find the designs of both Nokia and HTC Windows Phone to be boring and uninspiring, at least Samsung has tried something different with the ATIV S!!!

neo158 said,

The article is about Windows Phone not Nokia specifically and TBH I find the designs of both Nokia and HTC Windows Phone to be boring and uninspiring, at least Samsung has tried something different with the ATIV S!!!

Wut?

neo158 said,

The article is about Windows Phone not Nokia specifically and TBH I find the designs of both Nokia and HTC Windows Phone to be boring and uninspiring, at least Samsung has tried something different with the ATIV S!!!


lolwut? Nokia boring and uninspiring? Samsung different? LOL I think you forgot the /s.

neo158 said,

Don't you mean "GO WINDOWS PHONE!! "?

There are other manufacturers than just Nokia.

Maybe, but Nokia is doing the Lion's share of the work on Windows Phone, more than even Microsoft, although that wouldn't take much.

Would be good, for the user, to have 3 (or 4 if blackberry gets traction) major OSes in the market to pick from.

I'm pretty happy with my android phone but I've been somewhat disappointed by the fact the device, despite only being released in late 2011, got 1 update and was then swiftly "discontinued". Sure I can hunt around and install different versions of android myself but frankly it's not worth the effort.

Planning to jump ship from android, and my current cell provider, in July and buy myself a WP8 device. Looking seriously at the lumia 620 as I don't need uber specifications. If it has a few apps and a web browser I'm happy. It's also a little smaller and a fair amount lighter than my current device which is a plus. Just a little concerned about the battery life but apparently you can put a BL-5J battery in it for a bit more juice.

Edited by Sandor, Apr 27 2013, 2:57pm :

Have you considered the Lumia 720? It has a great battery life and IMO the sweetspot between price and quality. It looks even better then the high-end Lumias (mainly because its much thinner).

Ronnet said,
Have you considered the Lumia 720? It has a great battery life and IMO the sweetspot between price and quality. It looks even better then the high-end Lumias (mainly because its much thinner).

Did look at it but the price is a fair bit higher.

Unlocked 620 is about $260 (Canadian)
The 720 seems to be closer to $375

I don't consider the 720 spec increase to be worth the price. Sure it's a better battery, better camera and such like but other than that they aren't a million miles apart.

deadonthefloor said,

I seem to recall some difference in offline maps between the 620 and 720.....
I could be wrong.

Not really too worried. Any time I'm using maps or navigation I'll use Google maps or Waze which I see is due to be released on WP8 in June.

I think one has her drive and one has here drive +, the only difference is the + gives you a global licence and you can download all offline maps from all supported countries, the regular here drive app only allows you to download offline maps for the country your sim card is registered too.

Good news for Windows Phone, love my HTC 8x, Nokia is making awesome phones too, WP will only get better with time.

glad to see! lots of my peoples are really looking into getting a windows phone or a galaxy but not an iPhone. i haven't met a person yet in my school who likes the iPhone 5 because it is too tall and narrow.

But but but but... you mean you tell me all those articles a couple of years ago were wrong? You know, the ones saying that WP was DOA; was going to crash and burn; etc. Sure WP isn't sitting at 50% marketshare but what moron would have expected that? As I said then, this instant gratification society we live in really warps our perception. It takes actual time to develop something good. WP is doing that and with Nokia on board it's even better.

While we don't have some of the premier apps just yet, I don't get 'teased' for having a 920. When people see it and what it can do with what is has, they're either complimenting it or simply silent because they wish they had something like it. It's good to have competing platforms as it makes the others stronger, IMO.

laserfloyd said,
But but but but... you mean you tell me all those articles a couple of years ago were wrong? You know, the ones saying that WP was DOA; was going to crash and burn; etc. Sure WP isn't sitting at 50% marketshare but what moron would have expected that? As I said then, this instant gratification society we live in really warps our perception. It takes actual time to develop something good. WP is doing that and with Nokia on board it's even better.

While we don't have some of the premier apps just yet, I don't get 'teased' for having a 920. When people see it and what it can do with what is has, they're either complimenting it or simply silent because they wish they had something like it. It's good to have competing platforms as it makes the others stronger, IMO.


+1.

laserfloyd said,
But but but but... you mean you tell me all those articles a couple of years ago were wrong? You know, the ones saying that WP was DOA; was going to crash and burn; etc. Sure WP isn't sitting at 50% marketshare but what moron would have expected that? As I said then, this instant gratification society we live in really warps our perception. It takes actual time to develop something good. WP is doing that and with Nokia on board it's even better.

While we don't have some of the premier apps just yet, I don't get 'teased' for having a 920. When people see it and what it can do with what is has, they're either complimenting it or simply silent because they wish they had something like it. It's good to have competing platforms as it makes the others stronger, IMO.

+1,000,000,000

Yes, but in the end, Android still stands on top at 49.3% and Windows Phone (only) 5.6%.

The majority of the US uses Android (I do to, and I love it)!

Um so what?!?! Hahah, feeling a bit insecure are we. Dude just try a WP8 device with an open mind, i swear it might impress you.

Enron said,
I'm pretty sure we can all read.

Hahaha +1.

It's only a matter of time before Android's market starts to go down too. Microsoft's biggest problem was that no one knew about Windows Phone, and that is changing.

68k said,
Yes, but in the end, Android still stands on top at 49.3% and Windows Phone (only) 5.6%.

The majority of the US uses Android (I do to, and I love it)!

Nothing wrong with some new competition...the more they steal eachothers ideas the better...platforms will keep improving.

I know! I love it too because every time an Android device is sold, Windows Phone gets more marketing & R&D money from all the mobile patent licensing that Microsoft has negotiated with Android OEMs ... so much so that Microsoft may actually be making more money off of Android than Google is, without having to worry about silly things like Android's ongoing maintenance & development. Ain't it great? http://sulia.com/channel/all-t...urce=twitter&repost=120

68k said,
Yes, but in the end, Android still stands on top at 49.3% and Windows Phone (only) 5.6%.

The majority of the US uses Android (I do to, and I love it)!

So we all have to mindlessly follow the crowd do we?

What do you mean in Italy? All I can tell you is that we Italians don't see the difference between WP7 and WP8. They are still marketing the Lumia 610, the leading Windows Phone here...

According to some numbers WP has 13% market share in Italy. It remains a fact that WP is seeing a much faster adoption rate in the EU compared to North-America

Another report shows that Nokia Lumia also has the highest satisfaction rate among smartphones owners in the USA . Seems like word of mouth has finally hit critical mass and will have great impact on future sales.

I know WP gets a lot of hate around here but it is a very simple and elegant operating system. It gets the job done with style and ease and that is what most consumers need. There is definatly room to improve it for powerusers but I'm not suprised at all that WP is getting praised by consumers and is also starting to sell well. Combined with Nokia's superior hardware its one of the best offers out there today.

alwaysonacoffebreak said,
Nokia's superior hardware - Brace yourself for a punch of flaming posts from specw****.

Perhaps I should be more specific. Superior hardware as in build quality. I know there isnt a quad-core Lumia (I've never seen the point in it either, my laptop and tablet arent even quad-core).

They can flame all they want but I doubt the average consumer cares about specs. As long as a Phone feels fast and fluid I doubt most people care whether its dual or quad (or even know what those terms stand for).

And when it comes to build quality it is a fact that Nokia is ahead of the pack. This is something consumers will notice. Even the low-end Lumias have great build quality. It isnt just the outside but the inside as well. Just look at those photos of the inside of the 920 compared to the HTC One. There is no doubt that Nokia has Always been great when it comes to hardware. Which is why they were smart to enter a partnership with a software company. In time this will proof to be a smart decision and these are the first signs.

I don't think it gets hate at all, I think people like me think that the adoption rate of apps from iOS and Android is too slow, and that kind of makes WP8 less appealing (as well as some of its shortcomings in the OS, such as no notifications center).

Neobond said,
I don't think it gets hate at all, I think people like me think that the adoption rate of apps from iOS and Android is too slow, and that kind of makes WP8 less appealing (as well as some of its shortcomings in the OS, such as no notifications center).

hit the nail on the head.

Still absolutely love my 920 though, but there are some shortcomings.

"Seems like word of mouth has finally hit critical mass and will have great impact on future sales."

Maybe, maybe not. This isn't total marketshare, it's just smartphones sales from Jan through March. In the same period, Apple sold 37 million iPhones (http://9to5mac.com/2013/04/23/...m-ipads-just-under-4m-macs/) but we don't know what % that is of the total market. We can guess that iPhones are, say, 40% of all smartphones sold which means that Windows Phone phones shipped around 4.6 million handsets. (Assuming total sales equal 92 million.)

This is definitely a step forward, however. Have to say, some of HTC's new Windows Phone do look rather good.

maxslaterrobins said,
"Seems like word of mouth has finally hit critical mass and will have great impact on future sales."

Maybe, maybe not. This isn't total marketshare, it's just smartphones sales from Jan through March. In the same period, Apple sold 37 million iPhones (http://9to5mac.com/2013/04/23/...m-ipads-just-under-4m-macs/) but we don't know what % that is of the total market. We can guess that iPhones are, say, 40% of all smartphones sold which means that Windows Phone phones shipped around 4.6 million handsets. (Assuming total sales equal 92 million.)

This is definitely a step forward, however. Have to say, some of HTC's new Windows Phone do look rather good.

with cell phones,installed base can change very very quickly. with 1 and 2 year contracts,people are upgrading in that short time. when sales marketshare increases, this will cause also a rapid increase in installed base share. most people are not holding on to their phone for 5 years.

Philip James Fry said,

hit the nail on the head.

Still absolutely love my 920 though, but there are some shortcomings.


Agreed. And I'm glad to see Microsoft addressing those shortcomings in their regular updates.

I think by the end of the year many of those shortcomings will be memories (everything I've heard suggests this).

I don't understand what is new from this article. Its known that its Android, iOS and WP that are the 3 OS's for smartphones right now. BB10 also only came out recently. WP has been out for sometime now. Now iOS and Android still have 90% of the share though.

onionjuice said,
BB10 also only came out recently. WP has been out for sometime now.

Windows Phone 8 only came out recently...

maxslaterrobins said,
In the same period, Apple sold 37 million iPhones (http://9to5mac.com/2013/04/23/...m-ipads-just-under-4m-macs/) but we don't know what % that is of the total market. We can guess that iPhones are, say, 40% of all smartphones sold which means that Windows Phone phones shipped around 4.6 million handsets. (Assuming total sales equal 92 million.)

Are those wordwide numbers, or US? Windows Phone is at only 5.6% in the US, but that's one of it's weaker markets.

What superior hardware? The current generation of Android handsets blow any WP handsets out of the water where hardware spec is concerned. Granted they tend to have better cameras than most Android phones

Javik said,
What superior hardware? The current generation of Android handsets blow any WP handsets out of the water where hardware spec is concerned. Granted they tend to have better cameras than most Android phones

The difference being that the Android phones actually need that hardware to run smoothly and properly.

rfirth said,

Windows Phone 8 only came out recently...

Are those wordwide numbers, or US? Windows Phone is at only 5.6% in the US, but that's one of it's weaker markets.

They didn't say Windows Phone 8. It said Windows Phone, so I'm assuming it includes all versions. That's like saying Android and saying only Jelly Bean 4.2.2 which prolly accounts for like 1% of the devices.

rfirth said,

Are those wordwide numbers, or US? Windows Phone is at only 5.6% in the US, but that's one of it's weaker markets.

the iphone figure he quoted (37 million) is worldwide,and he is wrong about 4.6 million wp shipped figure. nokia alone sold 5.6 million worldwide in the quarter, not including htc,samsung,huawei. total windows phone worldwide shipments are somewhere between 8-10 millon.

Yeah, I don't really ever hear anything negative about Windows phones. I think people just don't know anything about them and don't want to switch from their current ecosystem.

Philip James Fry said,

The difference being that the Android phones actually need that hardware to run smoothly and properly.

No they don't. I have a dual core device, mid range by today's standards and it runs beautifully on that as well. Hell my mum has my old Galaxy S and even that's pretty fast.

In fact the only reason Windows Phone appears to run smoothly is because it's a piece of dumbed down crapware that lacks Android's advanced multitasking setup.

Javik said,

No they don't. I have a dual core device, mid range by today's standards and it runs beautifully on that as well. Hell my mum has my old Galaxy S and even that's pretty fast.

In fact the only reason Windows Phone appears to run smoothly is because it's a piece of dumbed down crapware that lacks Android's advanced multitasking setup.

you cant say any of these run smoothly with a straight face. that is a straight up lie,unless your standards are very low. even the galaxy s4 is choppy and laggy as ****,even with ,what is it,an 8 core processor? its a complete joke that today they cant even get a mobile os to run smoothly. typical "open source" developers who couldn't code their way out of a paper bag.its embarrassing.

and theres nothing "advanced" about multitasking. the cpu gives each thread some time to perform their duties. wp and ios suspend background apps to reduce power consumption. that is why your android device has such ****ty battery life.