Latest report shows global Win Phone growth, strong Nokia comeback in the UK
Latest figures published by market research group Kantar has revealed that Windows Phone is on the rise across the board, excluding a number of markets where sales remain low. The Nokia Lumia 920, HTC 8X and Samsung ATIV S are all high-end smartphones that will be pushing the platform forward in 2013 with potential marketshare gain in multiple locations, but how has the platform progressed through 2012?
According to supplied data, Windows Phone is continuing to grow in a number of markets, comparing marketshare of November 2012 and the same period the previous year. Italy again saw the highest increase at 8.2%, while Great Britain of all markets came in second with 3.4% (largely down to Nokia's Lumia efforts), just behind Android. The platform is still evidently lagging behind, but it's definitely taking strides.
The data does not reflect launches of hardware by supporting OEMs, since we're closing at November which is when Windows Phone 8 was officially released. We'll be waiting for data that'll include the festive holidays with the ATIV S being made available, as well as the Lumia 920 exclusivity coming to an end in the UK.
But not all is rosy in the marketshare table as both Germany and Brazil reported drops of 1.4% and 1.8% respectively. Again, this is before we take into account the latest hardware, but it does show a slowdown with the disappointment caused by the non-upgradable-to-Apollo Windows Phones that were released earlier this year. EU5 as a whole (France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK) saw an increase of 2.1% for Windows Phone.
In the US, Android took a battering while iOS regained some ground. Google's platform fell behind Apple with a reported fall in marketshare of almost 11%, while Windows Phone enjoyed growth of 0.6%. It's minute, but we'll take it over a sudden drop that Android experienced. The US may be switching to an iOS dominated market, but Europe remains on Android's side of the fence.
Dominic Sunnebo, global consumer insight director at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, had the following to comment on the performance of Windows Phone:
Is it looking positive for Windows Phone? Sure it is, but we'd like to see some updated figured post-New Year to really see how the new hardware is performing in retail and operator stores across the globe. 2013 will be a defining year for Microsoft. With the upcoming launch of its Surface Pro Windows tablet, Windows Phone will be closely marketed alongside Xbox and Windows 8 in attempt to drive momentum.
Be sure to download the data (PDF) from the Kantar website.
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Rich Edmonds was formerly a 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 on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.
It looks like Kantor's numbers for the last three month just reflect the period where WP8 was not available yet with people waiting for the release and then (most part of Novenber, beginning of December) a time when people (including me) where waiting for their pre-odered phones. I suspect the Lumia 920 high-end phone was the most ordered WP8 device in Germany, so that the shortage of this particular model really mattered.
The last 1-2 weeks of the stats now show how the devices get delivered, causing a sudden bump up of 0.6-0.7 % in the installed base market share.
So, WP share is not down but up for Germany!
And Germanys biggest Mobile Operator T-Mobile just announced to sell Lumina 920s due to high cutomer demand. The original Plan was to sell the 820 only.
Everyone seems to have either galaxy's or iPhones.
When contact is up in April they will be going to WP to join me..
Lets hope this is the start of something big
Same can apply to most countries. So the final evaluation should be made by the end of 2013, when the people who bought the first Lumias, end their 2 year contracts and warranties. Then it will be interesting to see if they'll keep with WP or if they will also abandon it for another OS.
I am also considering switching from my 1sr gen WP to the iPhone some time in 2013, either to the 5, or to the 6 if my switch doesn't happen before summer, or to the 5 after the 6 is out and the 5 gets cheaper.
A lot of factors go into that and in favour of it, not any particular one dissatisfaction with WP, it's update policy (WP8 update is available but still no 7.8? And all we get in 7.8 is tile resize? Are you f#cking kidding me?) or any of its OEMs, but also:
- a dissatisfaction not only with the availablity but also the quality of applications. I still use the same Apps I used 18 months ago. Nothing new of relevance has been added. AND on top of that, the quality of the Apps that have been working perfectly fine a year ago has detoriated and become much worse, plus some Apps like WhatsApp are overriding system features and my personal wishes and destroying my phone experience with their audio-stream-keep-wifi-alive-battery-sucker thingy. They waste my battery and I have to turn it off every single time I enter/exit their App, which can be from a few to hundreds of times a day., and they kill my playlist in my music player with their fkicng thing, so I have the choice of not answering my message or destroying my music listening experience - great choice you fcktards. And did Microsoft block it from the market because it does something that it isn't supposed to do from the users side? No - they let them. Fu I hate it that they have taken control of that completely from my hands and I can't do anything about it.
- the system functions/applications like:
--irritating autocorrect behaviour especially in third-party apps, also very slow keyboard reaction in third-party apps, I write and it only shows after I am a couple of letters or words ahead already. WTF?
--slow load times of third-party Apps that was supposed to be gone with WP8's native code (instead of silverlight's flash-app-like code behaviour of WP7) but is still present on WP but not on iphone
--no notification area, when I miss something it's gone and all I have left (in the best case) is a number on my live tile that doesn't tell me anything, and maybe I don't want to go online in an App and have it marked as "read" or received, maybe I want to ignore it - so I have no way of seeing what I have missed - I really wish Nokia would've developed Harmattan on Android's core (because of the Apps) and made it 100% fluid like their N9 is, I don't care about the underlying code as long as everything functions perfectly
-- The browser is plain retarded. Before Mango it had search on page and forward, but now it not only lacks those two but is completely broken. Some times I am on a web page and navigate around it, and when I want to go to the previous page (like on wpcentral, you go into an article, read it, and then go back to the homepage to read another article) it just exits the App like there was no previous site, or even goes into the App I was previously in. Sometimes the whole browser just shuts itself down if a page is too "heavy" (or whatever it is), throws me back on the start screen and erases all the tabs, so when I enter it again it is empty like I am first starting it. WTF?! Did they fix it? OF course not. Was it happening before Mango? No. They also removed the good favourites and tabs buttons that allowed for very quick navigation. You would usually just put your most visited sites in the favourites and with the tab button and the favourites button you could navigate very quickly. But now? Horrible navigation. Having to pull up that menu every single time.
-- The facebook integration is still bs, and so is the App. I have both, but never use any of them. If I want to know what's up on facebook or read a message or anything, I always use the web browser and desktop site because only that offers a proper functionality and performance. And thanks to the screwed up webbrowser, it crashes 30-50% of the time I go on facebook. What the hell is that?
-- A hundred other small irritations and broken things that I can't remember right now.
- Then the device selection. No single OEM is willing to offer me a high-end phone, with a nice design, quality made, and top of the line quality parts like screen, processor, ram, storage etc. if I don't want a fucking 10-15cm large screen. The iPhone is legit the ONLY option if you want a human-hand sized phone with top notch quality and performance. Every other OEM just puts out junk-bin hardware in everything that isn't their largest-screened phone. On Android and WP. Well, if you don't want to sell me what I want, I will buy from someone who wants to give me what I want for my money. Simple. I am still hoping that Nokia will put out a 7xx phone and revive it as their design line, but seeing how the 8xx is not their photo line any more, and the design of anything short of the highest end 9xx sucks, my hope is in vain.
They really leave me no other choice. There are things that I liked about WP, then Microsoft shortened that list, not a lot of it is left, and now they have increased the list of things that I don't like and that irritate me and hinder my use to be several times longer than the list of things I like. Basically all that is left is that I like the look of the pictures hub, and that's basically it. The Maps experience is bs. Not even the Music Player works properly and pulls covers and artist backgrounds, even if I have gone through the (that I shouldn't even have to do in the first place) trouble of finding a third party program (Zune Social Tagger) and correctly linked every Album manually in several hours of work - and it still doesn't work, even if it works properly on Zune on the Desktop and has an artist background if I go to the Marketplace and play a preview of one of the artist's songs.
Notsorry, the look of the pictures hub (after I put in cool pictures from a third-party App - again) is not enough to keep me, especially with no device selection that I would like. I can barely reach the upper left corner with my thumb on my current 3.7 inch screen, I really am not interested in carrying around a phone that has half the screen-diagional of a TV that I had when I was a kid and which I have to use two hands for to operate. Tablets are so cheap that there is no need for a huge phone anymore, that was the case before tablets came out. Today you can just buy a 100-350$ tablet for your larger-screen-because-of-websurfing needs - and keep your phone phone-sized. I don't need a tablet as a phone. And no OEM, neither on WP nor on Android, is offering me a high-end top-of-the-line device in a hand-sized package with a normal sized large screen and not a humongous screen. So they have pushed me to actually consider purchasing something from a company that I personally don't like a bit. But what am I gonna do...they DO have the best product. Others don't seem to want to make a product as good.
Why should I punish myself any more?
Everybody has a different take on things and it's hard to cover it all. I for example want the largest possible screen I can have that STILL fits in my pocket that is also my phone. The only other thing I routinely carry is a full power laptop, can't do business with a tablet.
As an example, the Year-over-Year percentage point increase in U.S. marketshare for the Windows phone is 0.6. But the actual percentage increase in marketshare YoY is about 29%. Clearly a more representative number which better describes the gains for Windows Phone in the last year.
iOS U.S. marketshare increased 49% in the same period and Android dropped by about 20.5%. These percentage numbers show that while WP is creating some competition for Android phones, there are still plenty of growth challenges in order to slow iOS down.
What I think they are going to find is that the distaste isn't just for android, but rather for all of their products. Google search remains as the only service you can take full advantage of without having your entire life indexed and sold.
You are so wrong on this point. Google tracks and stores multiple data points about your search activity. They look at what you search for, where you are when you search, the device, the time, the sites you click on, your search history, your friends searches compared to yours, how banners and other paid ads affect your search, how your search ties into your web browsing, how your emails match your search history and now they also tie that all into your credit card usage and offline buying. Google is not a search engine, they are an advertisement tracking conglomerate.
People who are willing to shell out money to buy expensive phones like the 920 or 8X are usually already established in a platform like Android or iOS, but who might be willing to take tentative steps to try WP with the 620.
And there are those millions in emerging markets who are moving from feature phones and can only afford cheaper phones. The HTC 8S could have been IT, but specs are too dumb down and price point still high.
On the other hand, young consumers are very aware of Windows Phone's ecosystem. They know it is missing a few key apps. So it will take some time for Windows Phone to reach a critical mass, at which point word of mouth will make WP grow among young consumers. I'm convinced its social media integration can make it very popular. The way how it syncs together all your pictures and shows your content through live tiles will make it very attractive. Word just needs to rech enough people.
Most younger people, and those around my age group use either Samsung or iPhone, even HTC's android phones are also rare. Blackberry is almost non existent (Qwerty users are using the Nokia E series or Asha devices). The app store for Malaysia is pathetic, some apps not available for unknown reasons that i had to use fake address and put my location as USA to be able to access some better paid XBOX games. Otherwise the OS itself, im pretty satisfied with it, but it deserves more improvements. Very fluid and fast.
a) Proper privacy advantages campaign on RTL. Showing the privacy advantages of WP8, the devices, comparing it to Android. Make it funny!
b) You need bundles, they love that! Like buy 10 Games bundle and download 10 games of your choice, for a discount Bundle the Samsung Ativ S phone and Smart PC at Media Markt, Saturn etc. for a killer price. Later do the same with HTC and Nokia phone + Tablet.
c) You need Windows Store cards at every Lidel and Aldi store, with frequent promotions. Like easter, x-mas offers... Get 5 to 10% discount on the price of a card!
D) You need a hero device... Germans don't buy if you don't show em your competence.
I have the luck that an ex. of mine was in the German hardware distribution business, the Germans just love good deals and bundles! Once they get to know WP8 and it becomes affordable for them, they will love it!
I find it a bit strange for huge company like Nokia (it still is a BIG player!!), to not be prepared to have big stacks of devices ready for launch?
People tend to get tired of waiting and change their mind to another phone if there's no phones to get hold of and the availability dates keeps being pushed forward all the time.
Also the promised '46 out of top 50 apps from other platforms' seems to be a long way ahead..?
Instagram is a HUGE, HUGE app to be missing.
I personally don't care about it, but almost all the young smartphone-buyers do, and it is DEFINITELY a dealbreaker for them.
Lack of most popular apps = little or no growth of the eco-system.
No growth of users = no interest from dev's to develop new apps. From my point of view getting the biggest apps faster to WP is the only way for success.
Having said that, I'm not a app-junkie myself but almost everybody out there is.
And it is frustrating to see that bank-apps, payment apps etc. isn't available when you need them.
Germany has always been a very hard market for MS as free software is very wide spread here and MS is being hated by most users. As an example Germany has the lowest Internet Explorer marketshare in Europe (less than 20% ue IE).
Spain, Italy, UK an France is going good with WP.
Btw, I could win a 920 by that.
Imagine my shock, if I'm able to see WPs in a small town like Macclesfield, the future is really starting to very bright WP, my message to Microsoft and especially Nokia is to keep up the good work.