Android is continuing to grab market share across Europe, and is now running on two out of every three smartphones.
New research from Kantar WorldPanel ComTech showed that across Europe, Android increased its market share by 43.1% to 67.1%, compared to last year. Apple's iOS share decreased during the same period, across the 12 weeks to 5 August. Its share shrank 25.5% to 14.6%. While consumers are opting for bestselling Android devices like the Samsung Galaxy S III, Apple fans are awaiting the new iPhone, which will be announced later this month.
Android continued its growth in the UK, albeit not at the same rate as in the rest of Europe. Its share was up 29.1% on 2011, while iOS' share was up 4.8% to 21.8%. As has been the case for some months, both RIM and Symbian were the big losers. The BlackBerry manufacturer's OS more than halved to 9.3%, while Symbian's share shrank by 77.6% as Nokia's migration to Windows Phone continued. The Microsoft OS experienced strong growth, almost doubling to 4.3%.
Dominic Sunnebo, global consumer insight director at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, said: 'Android continues to dominate the European market in the build up to the iPhone 5 release, increasing its share by 20.2% in the past year. Surprisingly, Windows has managed to maintain its 5% share despite a raft of new Windows 8 products being announced. However, this has been achieved through heavy discounting.'
Sunnebo said consumers were opting for bigger screens, with 29% of Android devices sold during the past 12 weeks having a screen size of more than 4.5 inches. Apple is widely expected to respond to this consumer trend by releasing an iPhone with a larger screen. Sunnebo said screen size was key to consumer retention as the more engaged a customer is with their device, the more likely they are to stay loyal to a brand when upgrading.
He added: 'It is interesting to look at the impact a larger screen size has on how consumers use their smartphones, particularly as the line between tablets and smartphones becomes more blurred. Consumers who own a smartphone with a larger screen tend to be much more engaged with their device across a whole array of functions. For example, only 19% of consumers with a screen smaller than three inches download and watch videos, compared to 65% when the screen is five inches or more.'
Editor: Graeme Neill