Latest data claims over 75% of active Windows 10 Mobile devices are OS upgrades

Microsoft seems to have succeeded in getting a higher rate of current Windows 10 Mobile devices as updated 8.1 devices instead of new sales, at least according to this month's AdDuplex report.

Alternatively, only 22.82% of current Windows 10 Mobile Lumias are of the x50 series (Lumia 550, 650, 950, 950 XL), suggesting that people are not actively buying these phones either. That leaves 77.18% of all Windows 10 Lumias as in-situ upgrades from Windows Phone 8.1. Considering the Lumia 950 and Lumia 950 XL are priced quite high, and the Lumia 550 and Lumia 650 did not see widescale release, none of that should a shock.

While that bodes well for people clinging to their old hardware, it does nothing for Microsoft or the small handful of other Windows Phone manufacturers.

Windows 10 Mobile up 1.2%

In related news, the share of all Windows Phones running Windows 10 Mobile is up 1.2% over last month for a total of 10.4% of the Microsoft pie. That number, however, seems to have slowed slightly from previous months as the number of available phones who have not received the upgrade and the rate of new Windows Phone purchases both decrease.

The vast majority of existing Windows Phone – 78.8% - are still running Windows Phone 8.1. That number could substantially drop once people trade in their phone. Current market forces tell us those people likely won't be staying within the Microsoft ecosystem.

Insider versus non-Insider?

For the first time, we are also getting a first glimpse at the breakdown between Insiders builds and non-Insider "production" releases.

Looking at all current Windows 10 Mobile phones that are active and AdDuplex was able to discern that 14.41 percent of those devices are Insider status with 85.59 percent opting for production builds.

While the overall number of people running Windows 10 Mobile is small compared to iOS and Android, the number within the community running Insider builds (aka beta releases) is relatively high, likely reflecting the enthusiast user base that is left with a Windows Phone.

Around the World

AdDuplex also focused on a few countries in the report due to be published tomorrow. Here are the highlights.

US

No significant changes from last month with the Lumia 640 remaining the most popular with 27.8 percent representing all current Windows Phones.

The Lumia 635 is number two with 25.4 percent.

There is no mention of the Lumia 950 or Lumia 950 XL as their numbers are likely too small and are folded into the 23.3 percent of the "other" category.

France

The Lumia 635 (18.4%) is still number one, but the Lumia 640 (12.1%) is now the second most popular Windows Phone in that country.

The Lumia 930 and Lumia 925 have dropped off the top ten with no other high-end phones to replace them suggesting sharp declines in that country.

Germany

Perhaps the one fascinating country in the report is Germany. The Lumia 950 there is at 3.1 percent of all active Windows Phones and is close to cracking the top ten there. At least proportionally speaking that is the best we have seen yet for that phone, although the relative number of real users is unknown and likely small like the overall Windows Phone market share.

The number one spot is still held by the Lumia 630 (13%) with the Lumia 640 close behind in number two with 12.8 percent.

Poland

AdDuplex calls Poland one of the Lumia strongholds, but unfortunately that too is fading with the new Lumia 550 placing number 21 out of all Windows Phone and no other x50 models cracking the top ten.

Apparently, Microsoft and the Lumia brand have fallen out of favor in that country.

Like other regions, the Lumia 640 is number one (14.6%) with the Lumia 535 (14.5%) close behind.

India

Similar to Poland India is on a downward trend with the latest Lumia devices. AdDuplex notes that India is one of the first countries to have new Lumias crack the top ten, but not this time. The Lumia 550 is shockingly placed at number 27 making that phone a complete disaster concerning winning over entry-level consumers.

The Lumia 535 still holds the top spot with 22.4 percent with the ancient Lumia 520 holding 12.5 percent for second place.

Analysis

With Microsoft's mobile strategy being one of retrenchment the numbers here should not be too surprising.

The Lumia 650 is the last of the Lumias, and Microsoft is putting any new mobile hardware on hold until 2017 when the OS will be on stronger footing than it is today. In the meantime, we may see some new OEMs come on board, but nothing substantial until post-Windows 10 Anniversary Update later this summer.

While devices like the Lumia 550 and Lumia 650 have failed to resonate it is likely a reflection of low-cost Chinese Android devices eating up that once valuable market. Indeed, it is likely a smart move for Microsoft to get out of that market as competition there is going to be fierce when you consider all the corners some Chinese firms are cutting putting pressure on Samsung, LG, and HTC.

The one other interesting note is that Acer has already jumped to the number 6 spot next to BLU as a Windows Phone manufacturer. Acer's Jade Primo is only in select markets at this time, but their name recognition and mid-range specs seem to be making some impact suggesting big name OEMs may yet have a shot at winning some of the Windows Phone market now that Microsoft is pulling back.

The question is, of course, will other companies see value in investing in the ecosystem. That is something we likely won't see until later in the year. Later this summer, we will also see the launch of the Elite x3 "superphone" from HP. That device will be aimed at enterprise, but it will be interesting to see how well it resonates.

About AdDuplex

The numbers from AdDuplex are collected through their in-app advertising that is prevalent in over 5,000 apps in the Windows Phone Store. That data serve as an important metric within the Windows Phone ecosystem. The full AdDuplex report for May will be posted on their blog at https://blog.adduplex.com/ on Thursday (May 19).

Daniel Rubino
Editor-in-chief

Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been here covering Microsoft since 2007 when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, Microsoft Surface, laptops, next-gen computing, and for some reason, watches. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics and ran the projectors at movie theaters, which has done absolutely nothing for his career.

121 Comments
  • There really aren't that many Windows 10 Mobile phones to buy and the few there are a so-so. Again...just opinion.
  • Not really an opinion, but rather established fact and a result of Microsoft canceling half of the x50 portfolio and not pushing the rest hard. That is retrenchment, that is holding back until another date. This trend will continue likely for the rest of the year although the Elite x3 may give a nice jolt.
  • Let's hope that the retrenchment doesn't have the opposite effect. In the meantime it'd have been nice if the HTC 10 had a Windows version as well, the name would fit perfectly with the OS version
  • "retrenchment" is corporate speak for digging a grave. Kind of like how "realignment" is corprorate speak for laying off half of your employees.  
  • I'm beginning to think you're right.
  • Well, digging a trench is halfway to a grave anyway :)
  • Maybe it will later, I mean how would they sell a phone with fingerprint sensor with an OS that doesn't support it? Maybe they waited for that, I'm just guessing.
  • What does that mean in the context of this story? https://www.thurrott.com/mobile/windows-phone/67235/no-more-lumias no more lumias :(
  • I said in January there were no more Lumias after the Lumia 650. Not news.
  • It means that, in usual fashion, people like to jump to unfounded conclusions. When Apple gave their latest press conference after announcing their earnings decline, not once did they say the words "we are working on the next iPhone and will release it shortly." And yet, not one media outlet started claiming that since Apple did not say they are working on the next iPhone, that means there will not be one. In fact, the opposite was done - the media made a bunch of excuses for the decline, and tried their best to reassure people that Apple sales will start going up, that Apple is developing new products that will excite people, and so on. OK, so Windows Phone sales are not good, especially in comparison to the iPhone. So let's look at the sales of PCs to iPads. I know, people will claim that it is not fair to compare those two - never stopped Steve Jobs and now Tiny Tim, from making the comparisons, so it is valid. PC sales down some, still sells 1/4 billion per year. The PC market is doomed. Give up the crown to Apple because the iPad has done what Steve/Timmy said it would, take over the PC. But it hasn't. In fact, iPad sales have been down YOY over and over again. Down 20% this last quarter, which was 2x the drop in PC sales. And yet, the Apple sycophant media will not give in, they invent stories about how the iPad Pro outsold Surface Pro. Apple did not say anything about being hard at work on the next iPad, but the media has already started telling us how the next one will be great, will turn the market around, and it is the end of the PC era because of the iPad. A number of sites are reporting that same thinking, that since Microsoft specifically did not say they are working on the next Lumia, that the entire thing has been shut down. The same will not be done towards products from other companies, even though they may be doing worse than WP is in their respective markets (if they were, we would be seeing articles about how Linux is dead, not it is the year of Linux, again). No it may not be called "Lumia," it will probably be called "Surface Phone" but claiming that the entire product is being canned because they do not detail the next version is jumping to conclusions.
  • Your comparison has no salt, especially when you bring the iPhone and iPad into it as a comparison. The iPhone is the #1 selling phone on the planet, despite its decline, and profits from that device are worth more than all of Microsoft. Of course there will be another iPhone model coming out, people don't have to say it or defend it. The situation with Windows phone is different, and cannot be compared because of its 1.7%(or lower) market share. There is a justifiable reason to believe that it would be cancelled. Same goes for the iPad, it still earns Apple billions of dollars a year regardless of the fact that fewer people are buying them.  No company would be expected to stop selling devices that earns them billions, that's why people know there will be new iPads and iPhones next year. On the other side of that coin, a line of devices that has caused nothing but huge losses for a company should be fully expected to be on the chopping block.
  • In addition to the monetary reasons, there is also Apple having been consistent in releasing new devices, especially iphones. You do not have to wonder about when the next one comes out since they release them yearly.
  • Has any other company done a similar retrenchment in the past and been successful upon its return to the market? Posted via my Moto X Pure Edition using the Windows Central App for Android
  • Well, Apple kind of did, with their computer business. Sort of. Microsoft is in a unique position though in that they will have an OS that us used on hundreds of millions PCs, that will also then run on their 4"+ devices that they release. I think that's how they will position themselves. I don't think there's a precedent for what Microsoft is trying to pull off. No idea if it will work.
  • Apple never had much market share in the computer business, though. If anything, it's higher now than ever. I can't think of any company, even one not in the tech sector, that was successfully able to gain market share of a product after all but ignoring it for a year. Posted via my Moto X Pure Edition using the Windows Central App for Android
  • With such a tiny market share now, Microsoft is effectively a fresh starter in the mobile business.  Almost all its market share have been eaten by iOS & Android since 2010 - what has been left is the OS.  This is so sad.
  • But they didn't ignore it for a year. They did release new high end hardware and low end hardware (both with great customization options, thanks to the MOZO deal) to tie us over till the next great thing (Surface Phone). The only negative thing (if you even call it that) they did was publicly state that smartphone wasn't their main focus this year. But they also stated they are fully committed to that 4inch form factor and are going to keep developing Windows 10 Mobile (which they actively do with pushing out new builds very often) and support current Lumia's and 3th party hardware as they have always done. They take this year to work in relative silence on Windows 10 Mobile to get it right, while offering the platform enthousiasts new hardware, but not pushing it mainstream, for now. But when they do release new hardware and Panos Panay gets on that stage and lets us know he's 'fully pumped' again you can be sure Microsoft is going to deliver something truly great and unique that wil blow every journalist (and platform enthusiasts) minds and the guys in Curpertino some sleepless nights (or some good laughs, at the product they will eventually coppy) ;-) Microsoft is very busy to work on greatness in the shadows, while the tech blogosphere is blinded by shiny stuff from Apple and Google (and that is a good thing) because when Microsoft does release their new products there wille be a huge wauw factor and hopefully 'a Phoenix Rising' (would that not be a great title for a Jason Ward analysis in 2017 ^^!)
  • Do you really think Windows 10 mobile is ever going to blow people's minds? If the Surface phone is running W10m then it will surely flop. Microsoft needs something truly revolutionary and market disrupting like the iPhone in 2007. Because they won't have anything like that, the Surface Phone will be killed before launch. No reason releasing it when market share is below .5% and there are no apps. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • They are not going to return to this market to produce phones. Surface phones would not have any substantial quantitties. Probably 1 or 2 phones so Daniel can have one. They are going to be OS developers and I don't see a retrenchment in a pace of W10M development. In fact W10M is developing faster then ever and we a getting features that were absent for years.  
  • Daniel, doesnt this corroborate my earlier statements and arguments with you about the fact that MS should have done more to get the old x20 handsets on board officially for W10 Mobile? 75% is staggering...
  • In greece if you want to buy a wp you can chooce between 6-7 phones now.950Xl-950-640-550-650. ...
  • Win10 phones are so-so, but they are still much better than the competition. Just shows how weak the devices from the competition are (especially from the fruit company), and explains the slowing sales.
  • So the Hp Elite will come in a few months and still we dont know the Price.I have a 640XL,its a very nice and fast phone,but i want to upgrade it with 950XL or the x3??
    We need some answers.
  • HP said it will be priced competitively with other high-end phones. Costs will actually be lower than expected since there is no advertising. The phone is mostly B2B with direct sales. Much of a phone's price is inflated by marketing costs. Since x3 doesn't go to carriers or retailers or ads, it keeps costs fair.
  • I realize that OEMs are waiting for Redstone. But it's discouraging to not see more come out and announce phones. Any news/rumors to expect more(a flood?) anytime soon? Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • LOL "fair cost" hahaha, that HP X3 will be priced around 700 - 850USD because its a HP with high end HW and materials. It wont be cheap and If I would be a HP marketing specialist I would sell it as a 3 in 1 device just to push up the price
  • You're talking price. Daniel said costs will be lower, enabling price to be on par with other high end phones. Cost is what it costs to make. Price is what the customer pays. The delta is the profit margin.
  • Good thing you're not a marketing specialist @ hp
  • Sadly it was high-end 6 month ago now its midrange
  • Read somewhere it will be 500usd. Maybe she's born with it, maybe it's Lumia 950xl
  • For me, the price doesn't matter :D I WANT that phone :3 :D Posted with the Windows Central app for Windows 10 on Lumia 535
  • Ssssshhhhhhh! Plenty of us do care about the price :)
  • Yes I know. And I'm not that rich either. :D But I'm so crazily in love with that phone, that I'll find a way to get one somehow when it comes out :3 :D
  • Or wait for a mini surface(phone).
  • Is this surprising? Fans of the platform haven't seen sufficient reason, need or desire to upgrade (to the lack of flagships). Combine that with an absence of any marketing, you have users sticking with their devices, those who know/can upgrading and the others migrating to new devices on rival platforms?
  • That came across very negative - I'm not, on Windows10/Mobile, but think the upcoming flurry of devices, followed by the Surface Phone should help (at least HP and Acer will advertise). #Windows10Mobile #DoMore - Lumia 735 and (free) #LumiaTrial 950XL
  • Lol my l929 is on mw10 but since the drop of aow ive lost interest in it as a primary device(or secondary for that matter as battery is taking a beating) & moved back to my sgh-t899m
  • "Is this surprising?"
    Pretty sure I say specifically a few times it is not surprising ;)
  • Not disagreeing - just not looking forward to my "Windows 10" newsfeed, as the Tech Press now have yet more muck to throw and headlines to write spelling out the "Death of Windows Mobile" (snore snore) #Windows10Mobile #DoMore - Lumia 735 and (free) #LumiaTrial 950XL
  • I don't think it's surprising, and nothing new.. I'm sure that over 75% of desktops running 10 are because of updates to older equipment. RoJo Arlington, TX Waiting for 6.2" Surface Phone Pro
  • The upgrade process to Windows 10 Mobile is also a bottleneck for this slow Windows 10 Mobile adoption. Some people may not know that they have to download an app to get the update.
  • My younger brother is an IT engineer and he doesn't believe that he needs to download an app to upgrade while PC is constantly spamming the upgrade.
    It's not so much "Universal" is it?
  • There is no app store for W7. If there was, then he would have a better point.
  • Microsoft will soon eliminate that app once they are confident about w10m
  • I don't thinks Microsoft really want ordinary customers, non-tech savvy people, to upgrade. The process would be a nightmare for most of the general public with all the hard resets etc.. to get them to run smoothly.. It would put more people off for ever than do good.... Once they get rid of the upgrade app we will know that Microsoft themselves has confidence in the platform...
  • Interesting to see that 80% are still on WP 8.1
  • Before 2 days a girl from my university said that was something with her phone and if i want to check it.So i fix the problem with the sim card and i saw that was a windows phone with windows 8 not even 8.1. ... ...
  • Tell her that an os update is available and ask her if she wants it. If she says no just leave it, if she says yes go ahead. :) I've been doing that to many WP users I know and it makes me feel like I'm keeping people with the times without being annoying or intrusive about it
  • I upgrade it to 8.1. But the phone its the 525 if i remember correct so i didnt try to upgrade to w10 through insider. ...
  • WP8 used to have functional People Hub.
  • Can anyone tell me if Spoken Caller id is available somewhere in windows 10?  I'd upgrade my 830 to 10, but i really like that option, i work with my hands for a living and it's nice to hear it read the name or number out loud so i know how important it is to reach for my phone.  I have a 640 i have windows 10 on and can't find it.  
  • It is there ... go and find it! ;-)
  • You can, with a registry hack!
  • I'm still waiting on the official w10 update on my at&t Lumia 830 to be released.
  • At&t is terrible with upgrades
  • At&t is terrible period. After 15 years with then I jumped to T-Mobile. No more subsidized/on contract WP flagships means no more reason to stay. T-Mobiles' coverage for me so far has been adequate.
  • I would buy a Lumia 950/950 XL but they seem a little expensive. $400/$500 and I would be willing to buy one.
  • Swappa.com you're welcome Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • That's also the going rate on ebay.
  • This was such a given its not even funny. I don't even know why you guys wrote the article. The 650 isn't really out yet, the 550 is also non-existant in most markets, and the 950 and xl has such low sales that OF COURSE the majority of WIN10M devices are upgrades....
  • I thought the Insider numbers were neat as well as trends in other countries.
  • None of the new W10 devices are particularly appealing and all are overpriced compared to the competition and even their predecessors. Them not selling is no surprise for those reasons alone but nice to see the new buzzword again on display.....
  • I bought the 640 for my mother for 50$ and the new 650 has 200$.I will not say anything more my friend. ...
  • Walmart is selling 640 Att GoPhones for $22
  • Unlocked?
  • U just request an unlock code via email from the Att site before u put in the sim card & I always get a response within a few days
  • I'm pretty sure the price is only for in-store purchases though
  • Im from Greece so i will have any problem if i will buy it and just put another sim card? ...
  • U'll have to compare Att's Bands to those of the carrier u want to use. Plus the US has different LTE frequencies than everybody else. One of the only downsides to buying Chinese phones for use in the US
  • 950xl at 389€ in Italy, id's say cheap for a flagship!
  • Unlock right? ...
  • Unlock right? ...
  • Isn't every phone in the EU unlocked by now?!
  • I would have loved to buy a Lumia 650..but its very expensive compared to what it offers.
  • Buy a 640 instead, it runs W10M better than the 650 and it's cheaper. I picked up a 640XL for less than $100 Canadian and side by side comparison to my friends 650 just runs better.
  • It would be interesting to see how many people are on the fast, slow and release preview ring.
  • for pc or mobile? Posted from Windows Central for Win