Just on the heels of Ovum's prediction of WP7 overtaking RIM in smartphone market share by 2016, comes more encouraging projections by International Data Corporation (IDC).  In a press release today, IDC's Ramon Llamas said that "by 2015, IDC expects Windows Phone to be number 2 operating system worldwide behind Android."  IDC credits this move up the ladder to Microsoft's partnership with Nokia

"Up until the launch of Windows Phone 7 last year, Microsoft has steadily lost market share while other operating systems have brought forth new and appealing experiences," added Llamas. "The new alliance brings together Nokia's hardware capabilities and Windows Phone's differentiated platform."

Android is expected to remain the top dog, while iOS, Blackberry and others will see a slight drop-off.  IDC estimates that worldwide smartphone market will grow at four times the rate of mobile phones and is expected to increase from 303.4 million smartphones shipped to over 450 million, a rise of 49.2%.

Whether WP7 flourishes or crashes and burns, it seems that the outcome of the deal with Nokia will be a key determining factor.

Source: International Data Corporation; Graph Picture:FinkOrSwim