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Windows Phone hitting 8% sales across Europe and explosive growth in Mexico, but still struggles in the US

Windows Phone is still making steady progress in Europe, according to latest data published by Kantar Worldpanel. The platform has leaped to grab 8.2 percent of sales across Europe in the UK, France, Germany, Italy and Spain.

Unfortunately, the same can't be said for progress in the US, but there's still progress and Microsoft is growing its share of the market in terms of device sales.

With the 8.2 percent in mind across five European markets in the three months to July this year, Windows Phone was at 4.9 percent the same time in 2012. iOS accounted for 17.9 percent of sales, up from 14.8 percent and Android reached for the 69.1 percent ledge, climbing from 66.2 percent. BlackBerry remains on its downhill slide, falling from 6.7 percent last year to just 2.4 percent.

Kantar Worldpanel - July 2013 Windows Phone Share by country

  • Germany: 8.8% (+2.6% YoY)
  • GB:  9.2% (+5% YoY)
  • France:  11% (+7.4% YoY)
  • Italy:  7.8% (-0.5% YoY)
  • Spain:  1.8% (+0.1% YoY)
  • USA: 3.5% (+0.5% YoY)
  • China: 2.4% (-2.2% YoY)
  • Australia: 7.4% (+2.4% YoY)
  • Mexico: 12.5% (+10.5% YoY)

The biggest and most impressive individual gains were seen in Mexico (12.5%) and France (11%) where double digit Windows Phone sales figures were finally reached. 

As we've covered before, a large portion of the numbers for Windows Phone come from feature phone owners who are looking to upgrade to smartphones and aren't interested in paying out premiums or investing in affordable handsets with performance issues. This is where the Lumia 520 comes in, going for less than 100 euros in multiple markets. AdDuplex previously noted in reports how the Windows Phone is taking off.

Source: Kantar Worldpanel, July 2013

Dominic Sunnebo, global consumer insight director at Kantar, had the following to comment on the report:

"Windows Phone's success has been in convincing first time smartphone buyers to choose one of its devices with 42 percent of sales over the past year coming from existing featurephone owners. This is a much higher proportion than Android and iOS. The Lumia 520 is hitting a sweet spot, offering the price and quality that new smartphone buyers are looking for."

It's certainly a demographic Nokia has been looking to tap into since the company joined forces with Microsoft back in 2011

Lumia 1020

Not the same story everywhere

While Microsoft and co. are slowly climbing up in Europe and beyond, it's the US where progress remains slow but steady. The platform has snapped up 3.5 percent of sales, up just 0.5 points from last year. This is despite multiple mobile operators taking hardware and promoting them with "hero status."

The Lumia 1020 launched in late July though those numbers were not included here. Regardless, it's the more affordable Windows Phones like the Lumia 520 and Lumia 521 that pique the interest from consumers. Indeed, the Lumia 520 (AT&T GoPhone) was not counted in these numbers as well due to it launching at the end of July.

According to Kantar's data, Apple increased its share to 43.4 percent of sales in the three months with a growth of 7.8 percentage points. In contrast, Android fell from 58.7 percent to 51.1 percent of US sales. Another bleak story is for BlackBerry, who fell from 1.9 percent to 1.2 percent year on year. China, much like the US, is a difficult market for Windows Phone to establish itself, which fell from 4.6 percent last year to 2.4.

In conclusion, while Windows Phone still struggles a bit in the hyper competitive US market, it has shown explosive growth in numerous countries, including Mexico, France and Great Britain. With a range or price points and various carriers deals locked in, Nokia appears to be dominating the show right now for Windows Phone as a platform, a story which we expect to continue for the rest of 2013.

Source: Kantar, via: ZDNet

Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds is Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him over on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.

  • Glad to see Nokia is catching up!
  • I hope they catch in features too and don't ditch us like WP 7. (Although WP 7 get update but still it is far from being a smartphone)
  • Easily one of the most unintelligent things I have ever read about WP... Ever!
  • Whatever, but this is the truth.
  • Seriously, i loved this and the graphs were interesting especially the graph that showed in some areas wp8 is cathcing up to apple . But then again i love my winows phone and would like to see it gain second place in popularity over apple. With the latest results posted by nokia they seem to be getting more of the US market too which shows how when people see them they want them, damn i have three freinds that own iphones and absolutly love my windows phone and are tempted to buy one the next time they come to upgrade.
  • You're probably just not smart enough to use it as a smartphone.
  • I want my WP back!!! :-( Android sucks!
  • I dunno.  Objectively speaking, it is Windows Phone that "sucks."  There are still simply too many essential things that this OS can't do, and there has been almost zero unequivocally forward progress since NoDo.
    For intance, while my L920 can do some basic multitasking, my NoDo Arrive could open and edit .DOC files, had wireless syncing and FM radio, and had a forward button in my browser.  When my Arrive got Mango, I got the multitasking but lost the ability to open .DOC files, lost the forward button in my browser and lost the ability to search on the Web page.  As MS giveth, they also keep taking away...oftentimes vital features.
    Android keeps getting better and better.  Windows Phone keeps not getting better.  We need to see real, and marked, progress in Windows Phone's basic capabilities before it can ever hope to compete in the marketplace against Android, which can do...well, everything.
  • So the article says Apple with its hardware obsolescent phones picked up share in the USA and Android, which keeps getting better and better, lost share. I don't know about you, but UC browser is excellent and has a forward button. IE has the ability to search a webpage. And basic Office is included on my phone. FM radio is coming or here, I will give you wireless syncing. And I am a 920 owner. Go back to Android please. Don't ruin the experience for everyone else. I recommend a S4 Zoom, fits in your pockets, looks great!
  • This sounds like another "my personal gripes" equals "the reason why WP is not doing well" anecdotal story, sorry.
  • Truth is spoken shut this chat down now! :)
  • And that is exactly what's wrong with the WP "community". Way too much of that garbage.
  • Yep. Windows Phone isn't all that great. I think I love the Nokia hardware more than the OS itself. Sorry but that's just my opinion. I really wish we could get Android on our Lumias. Shame that such a beautiful phone is wasted on such an underwhelming OS.
  • All I hear from critics is how much WP is lacking but I never hear exactly how. Why don't you tell how WP doesn't work for you?
  • Maybe instead of complaining that out dated formats aren't supported buy an out dated system you need to move along. .doc has been gone for for almost 7years. Mobile office can view but not edit these documents, But can edit .docx just fine. Update you office program and your OS while your is while you are at it. I simply do not understand why anyone adopted wp7 when Microsoft announced at the out set it would not be compatible with WP 8 and nit developed further once WP8 was released.
  • Agreed although, I bought a Lumia 900 last year from my wife's carrier because mine (Bell) doesn't offer any WPs.  I can't afford a 920 yet which Rogers offers, but will get one maybe end of year.  Back to my 900, I still use it throughout the day and it does everything I need.  Are there features, I'd like it to have? Sure, but all in all I'm very happy with it.
  • Well, I can edit these docs on mu android phone using third party apps, yet can't I on my WP using office.
  • When did Microsoft explain that WP7 wouldn't be upgradable to WP8? That's bullshit because it came as complete shock to everyone.
  • Good grief, that horse came and went a looooong time ago. The upgrade is a new phone. Get a Lumia 520/521 if cost is an issue.
  • "Android keeps getting better and better." When you start as garbage it's pretty easy to slowly improve. I'll never go back to Android, regardless of how much better it gets (and it needs to get a lot better for it to even be passable). I've used all the mobile operating systems and Windows Phone is easily the best one: intuitive, easy to use, lightning fast, SkyDrive and Office integration--for free--and Xbox games to boot. 'Tis a no brainer.
  • You forget one important thing.  Smooth and modern looking user interface.  Xbox Music, while still cooking, is a cloud player that works across all MS platforms.   Works well on the hardware it has... I'd say people buy WP8 smartphones because they can get a unified experience across the entire lineup.  They can get the premium experience of a 920 in a 520.  Personally I'm glad to see people embracing the new OS.  Hopefully in the next few years we can start threatening Apple's market share.  
    I doubt we'll ever reach a large market in the US... there really isn't much room with Android and iOS duking it out. 
  • Well, I for one did that because of the Nokia hardware. So far my music experience on the Lumia range has been a terrible let down. I've had some tags being unregognised when I transfer my music on my phone. Worst, the some becomes a lot when I try doing so from anything else than Windows.
  • I think the simplicity of Windows Phones and the lacking of all that shit you can do in android is where it´s beauty is. There are some things that WP needs and should have gotten yesterday rather than in a couple of months. But those changes are arriving.
    Android is just messy from its own nature... every option you open has like 45 sub options. Everything you do has the potential to be something that someone else is doing. Every manufacture adds and takes and changes and rapes and and and...
    It´s not a negative thing if have a lot of time or you are willing to spend a lot of time changing the 10000 options you get. I don´t have the time nor would like to have the time for such shit.
    I want to buy a phone and start using it and know where everything is. I don´t want to buy a phone I don´t find what I am looking for because it is simply full... or a phone I have to read through 30 options to find just a simple on...
    So it is relative, some people like it clean, simple and to the point... Others like it full, conplex and to have options just in case you might use them once in years (just before you don´t need to know anymore because you are getting a new smartphone where the interface is completely different)...
    So it is not better and better that it is getting... it is fuller and fuller (of shit)
  • After playing with wife's S4 I can tell you Android is frickin horrible. This is a quad core 1.9gz but as I scrolled through her caller list the scrolling us anything but smooth-sticky and sputtering while trying to flick from top to bottom. Same with several apps I played around with-laggy and glitchy.
    All I see is a UI that is stale and boring like the iPhone and it is pretty much a rip off of the iPhone anyway.
    Yeah WP has some shortcomings (not for me though) but not impressed with Android one bit.
  • I agree word for word. Basic functionality missing such as a forward button on the browser or the ability to close apps in the multitasking view (which is available in iOS, Android, Symbian and MeeGo). This is coming from an owner of a Lumia 800 then 920. I want to like it and WP8 was a definite step up from WP7 but not nearly enough. Focus more on the basics and less on gimmics like Kids Corner. Who actually uses that?
  • What do you mean you have lost the ability to search on page ? Just choose the feature from the three dot pull up menu "Find on page" Also I have no issues opening.doc files? Also the statement that windows phone just gets less functional is clearly not correct. Features may come and go but the net effect is always an increase in functionality. The latest GDR2 and Amber updates added a raft of functions, upgraded and new apps. Just take a look at the list.
  • +1, but the Windows Phone Team really need to get it up a notch, "Shut up and ship" is not exactly what they do, they neither talk a lot nor do they ship. Just how much time did it take for GDR2 to arrive on every phone? I know of unbranded Lumia 920s that got their update a couple of days ago. There is no excuse for that, sorry. My Surface RT gets updated almost every week. And GDR3 is half a year away again. Sometimes I really do wonder what the WP8 Team is doing all the time.
  • Your Surface can get updates every week because there isn't a carrier in the way. Ask your carrier why it took them so long to release GDR2, because Microsoft released it months ago.
  • For Now WP sucks more because MS is not listening and not providing most demanded features like File-Manger.
    Instead they provide those feature which hardly anyone want.
    and what I always listen is they are coming in next update. But there is on next.
  • WP does lack some silly things that most would think should always be there. Rotation lock, notification centers, and ability to close apps from the multitasking window among others, although those are three of the biggest. Along with its bugs like other storage. On the other hand, we are getting all three of those (nonessential but certainly expected) features this year or early next. I don't believe windows phone is significantly better than iOS or android... I certainly like it more and think it does things better in some ways, worse in others, but to call it dead is silly. It might not be unequivocally better, but it certainly isn't worse. To put it in the words of a writer from maybe Engadget, its the "best operating system that nobody uses" :P
  • I swear, some of you won't be happy until Windows Phone fully reverts back to Windows Mobile. Just because another OS has something doesn't mean it's worth having.
  • Don't forget some super simple stuff:   Custom email and text message tones.  Why don't we have that?  Or low power bluetoooth?  My 920 has the hardware, where is the support?
  • What do you mean with "File-Manager"? I have what I would call File management capability on my  WP. 
  • Direct file access is useful for managing email attachments for example. Wp8 doesn't have this feature. I love my 920, but there are holes. The game selection is overpriced, dated, and mostly terrible. Microsoft lost a great opportunity to leverage the Xbox name at the outset. We finally get a mobile halo experience, and its mediocre at best. The platform should have launched with a boatload of exclusive titles.
  • totally  agree !I have a Samsung Ativ S .It's far better from my precisely  Andriod phone . 
  • Wow.. Wp's catching up with iPhone in France..
  • European sales are increasing because of Nokia.
  • Yep, its great!
  • all the baltic ciuntries (finland, lithuania, letonia, and estonia) have a bigger percentade of wp than ios! Here almost all of the people i know owns a lumia. And we love it
  • Nicccceeeee!!!!!!
  • At least the rest of the world can see that the iPhone is garbage.
  • At least we're not BlackBerry.
  • Right? Pretty amazing how half a year ago the discussion was 'Could WP hold on to 3rd place'. By now BB is not even in the picture anymore. 
  • I wish for more apps and "HERE" support in Israel. Alot of people are amazed by my Lumia but I think they afraid from changes.
  • +1 to that.
  • +1
  • +920 to that! yeah its a bit sad but how's Israel? I heard its a great place to be are like phones expensive?
  • Israel is a gorgeous country. Phones are pricier but I wouldn't say they're crazy. But it does take a little longer to get the latest and greatest. But nowadays you can import easily. I travel between NY & Israel and I always purchase my phones while I'm in the US. I'm using an unlocked Lumia 920 from Rogers [T-Mobile USA]
  • Its growing even if it's slow going. I just remember the articles from a couple years back of people saying it was DOOMED and DOA. Morons, all of them. Gotta hand it to Nokia because I truly believe they saved Microsoft's bacon. ;) Here's to continued growth!
  • While what you're saying is true, the partnership with Nokia was also a Microsoft move (and money).
  • and do you think Nokia did the partnetship for free? im sure Microsoft is paying alot of money for that :)
    and you say "nokia saved Microsofts bacon" well... im sure thats the same with Android, without samsung Android wouldnt be as popular as it is now. so yeah, so in the end google and microsoft only make the OS, without oems there wouldnt be anything special on them.
    of course the decision of ballmer and Elip to make a partnetship with Nokia turned out to be good, because Nokia went WP exclusively, and WP is becoming more popular, since samsung and htc and lg didnt do anything for WP. anyway nokia makes better phones than any WP oem that we had before, so it was a good move from nokia and microsoft.
  • Nice! 10% of global marketshare next year. We can do it! :)
  • Yebba! When the 1080ps come, newer processors, better multitask, separate ringtones, notifications, etc. Hopefully background images like windows RT and w8.
  • I'm hoping for background images too, or at least some other ways for customizing the start screen.
  • Gdr3 will bring more people in the US.
  • thats what they say on every new upcoming version of everything
  • It would if they would release it now instead of next year
  • GDR3 will be out by November on new hardware (which will be announced end of Sept). You're confusing it with Windows Phone 8 .1 due early next year.
  • I did. Do you think 8.1 will bring a "notification center"?
  • Yes.
  • Awesome
  • How can you be so sure? They "ran out of time" back when WP 8 was released and here we are 11 months later and still nothing.
  • So sure about a notification center? Because I know a lot of the feature set of 8.1, that's why.
  • Is there a public list of those features or NDA sort of thing??
  • No NDA. Seriosuly, that term is thrown around way too often. MS does not show off aspects of the OS this early on to the media. Regarding public list, we have snuck some unannounced features into posts here and there. If you're clever you can find them. 8.1 has not been locked down yet, so publicly listing all the features is not helpful.
  • Care to elaborate? ;)
  • GDR2 hasn't even been fully released in the US. AT&T is still dragging their butt on releasing the update to 920's for some reason. Who knows I'd they will ever release GDR3. But we can't blame Microsoft for AT&T's arrogance and greed.
  • I was gonna say the same thing. Microsoft could release gdr3 today and with att I wouldn't get it till I upgrade my phone in a 18months.
  • At&t was the first to bring the L920 and the last to provide gdr2/Amber. At this rate we will probably get it when 8.1 blue comes in Feb.
  • I live in the United States and a lot of my friends are impressed with my 920. The issue for them us that they are still locked in to the phones they have until their contracts with their carriers expire. I wonder if the non- contractual business model in Europe is making it easier to switch and helping to springboard growth?
  • that's what I assumed as soon as I read the headline of the article. Not to mention carrier exclusivity deals is such a thing of the past & seems to only hurt overall sales growth.
  • Good observation.
  • To be fair, the non contractual model is just alive and well in the US. Nobody wants to go out and pay full price for a phone, the price of a PC or a couple bills, in the US as they do in Europe.
  • And end up paying more for both the phone and service. 'murrica for you
  • America: The only thing worse than our health care is our cellular phone systems
  • It's not the same. You can drop your monthly bill in Europe by a huge amount if you bring your own unlocked phone, whereas BYO discounts in North America are piddly (often only 10%).
  • Depends on where you go. Prepaid and by extension TMobile ate much like the European model. Version and AT&T though? Nope.
  • I paid 300€ for my unlocked Lumia 820 and I currently pay 7.5€ / month at Vodafone PT for unlimited sms, mms and calls + 300mb internet.
    How much do u all pay for that in US to get a Lumia 820 for free? 50$ month on contract for 2 years? Do the math.
  • Companies like att and Verizon charge you like $100/month on contract
  • "Do the math" LOL that reminds so much of the SNES vs Genesis war...
  • i paid 299eur for my 920 and 230eur for my moms 820. Both unlocked. I picked up a contract in vodafone for 20eur/month and that includes 2gb of 4g lte!
  • Signing a 2 year contract for a freaking phone sounds ancient, most people I know just bought their phone at retail, there is just too many advantages (cheaper, simpler and way more flexible).
    Could be anecdotal though.
  • Two of the largest carriers in the US do not give discounts when you bring your own device so in that respect there's little to no reason to do so when it means you will 'save' $400-500 up front.
  • Convinced the wife to upgrade from a feature phone to a 521 last add one more to
  • Based on this Nokia should see around 10 - 12 Million Nokia Lumia shipments thanks to the Lumia 520 and Lumia 625.
  • I'm interested in the large decline in Android sales in the US as shown above. I've always thought the constant weekly barrage of some new Android device from Samsung and the others had to be confusing for consumers who see the ads and then pop into the local carrier store and say they want "that Droid Note Galaxy phone that my friend has that I saw on TV." Then when shown several very similar, confused feature set devices, they either give up or say "Just sell me the iPhone." We need to get them to say "or the Windows Phone" at that point.
    I am interested in other theories about the drop in Android sales in the US, but I think market clutter and confusion is a big part of it.
  • Nokia is a very respected brand in Europe.
  • Nokia should give the US the low end phones and bring their top devices to markets where they sell the most. The US market is becoming a money pit and is the one most hostile to WP, pointless wasting so much effort there.
  • Their top end devices are only available on a single, shitty, carrier in the US. Only when their next flagship is about to come out is the prior one available on other carriers. This hurts Nokia as AT&T is arguably the worst carrier in the US. Yet they get the exclusivity deals.
  • AT&T network & customer service gets all 10's here in Los Angeles. They just won an award for it too
  • And yet here in the east, New York NY, Lexington KY, Huntington WV, Jacksonville FL, and Chattanooga TN, you are better off with no service than having at&t.
  • I have Verizon, T-Mobile and AT&T (just gave up Sprint last month) and have to disagree with this. AT&T by far as the best coverage, especially when I travel.  I honestly don't get the hate against carriers. It depends on what works for you, but for me...AT&T is the best here in Long Island and NYC for coverage and device selection. I was not very impressed with Verizon and T-Mobile is the most affordable/best deal, though their coverage is lacking.
  • You speak about not understanding the hate towards carriers, yet you are one of the biggest haters of Sprint.
    talk about using double standards...
  • I agree. I'm in N.C. and outside of them dragging updates. There service is outstanding and my 2 times at customer service was a very good experience.
  • The carrier zealotry isn't the reason. There are millions who don't agree with your "shittiest" conclusion.
  • Millions is a small number when it comes to carrier users.
  • AT&T's network is actually pretty good. Much improved in the last 10 years. Their customer service is still still horrible and winning a race to the bottom.
  • Don't give up on us. The 1020 has 3 issues:
    1 is the price
    2 exclusivity
    3 upgrades I would totally upgrade but I have to wait until 11/2014
  • ^^ it is laughable that EU needs to wait for devices like the 1020 while they are being wasted and sit in warehouses and stores in the US.
    Nokia needs to start focusing more on its domestic EU market and have the US and other less desirable markets wait for 3 months for new devices, instead of the other way round.
  • +920
  • Actually, the problem with the US market is that your pricing artifically lower the incentives for getting a cheaper phone as the subsidies make everything cost almost the same. This is obviously one of the reasons for the high iphone market share in the US compared to here in Europe. If anyting, Nokia should continue to offer flagship models to continue to work on their image in the US *together* with bringing some budget devices that can be sold off contract with cheaper plans. Marketing something like the Lumia 720 however, is more or less a lost cause in the US as it won't be signficantly cheaper than the flagships on contract, but still quite expensive off contract. Sure the, US is likely a loss at the moment for Nokia financially, but unfortanately, we can't afford to ignore your market as too many high profile apps are US based at the moment.
  • I think GDR3 should help with the top end market in the US when WP should be able to finally match android in terms of hardware. Americans always want the fastest, newest and best available in the high end market and that simply isn't on offer with WP currently. The 1020 is using a SOC that is over one and a half years old for example. Sure, it probably isn't needed so much on WP in terms of performance but it'll make a difference when things start to match up on the spec sheet. I think Nokia knows this and is why they've pushed their lower end devices so much, Microsoft is simply restricting them atm with their hardware restrictions.
  • Take into considerartion that the US is a big country. WP in France for instance may have 11% market share, but even with only 3.5% in the US they still sell more phones there since they have almost 5 times the population.
  • I think Microsoft should give out a free 520/521 for every purchase of any device with windows 8 / RT at their stores. People are just so wary of using it, so they need to shove it in people's hands and give them a taste of what the platform can really offer. Its a win win move. If people are disappointed, well hey that's our lowest spec phone. If they are impressed, HEY HEY HEY its our lowest spec phone, would you believe that? :P
  • That's actually a great idea, although giving it away might send the wrong signal. But offering a 50% or even 70% discount would lure many on board.
    Getting the L520 for, say, 30$ would be a steal, and tempt a lot of people.
  • How about Microsoft selling unlocked Windows Phones (every model) through their website and retail stores?
  • You know what would help in the US? Simultaneously launching the devices in multiple carriers. Instead of only one carrier. In which case, by the time it comes to another carrier the new thing is right around the corner.
  • If Nokia had a Samsung sized advertising budget or Apple's cult-based clout, maybe they could do this. The fact is that Nokia get marketing help and in-store placement boosts only if they partner with the carrier with an exclusive. IPhone started that way on AT&T and then Verizon countered with the Droid Does campaign. They wouldn't shell out $$ to advertise a device that you can get anywhere.
  • Agreed. After such small growth in the US, Nokia/MS should look at these numbers and re-evaluate how much the exclusivity deals are impacting their ability to grow market share.
  • You just don't get it... Exclusivity deals are the ONLY way they can these devices on the shelves in the US. If Nokia gave every carrier the 1020, none would take it (why sell a phone that their competitors sell? Then they'd have to compete on their "network" and they hate doing that). And if they did, they wouldn't promote it (just look at Sprint's latest Windows Phones...are you impressed by their marketing?). Nokia does exclusive deals because they get prime store locations, the carrier helps pay for the advertising and the reps get trained. Nokia is so weak in the US that they cannot use the "take or leave it" offer that Samsung and Apple get to employ. The problem here is you assume Nokia actually has a choice. They don't. They either do exclusive deals or no deal at all. 
  • Why are you such a defender of Nokia and AT&T, and a strong basher of Samsung and Sprint (and every CDMA carrier refusing to take orders from NOkia)?
  • Explain to the entire wpcentral community why there has not been a second national CDMA carrier or even the first regional or prepaid CDMA carrier in the US market (and there are at least two dozen of them excluding the mvnos of Verizon, Sprint, and US Cellular).
    i forgot, it's also Sprint's fault under your utterly flawed "theory" you have been preaching here fir over a year and a half.
  • While Nokia is most likely selling lots of 520s, I do not trust Kantar numbers.