Apple Trumps Google in US Smartphone Market

on Nov 28, 2012
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On Tuesday 27 November, Kantar Worldpanel ComTech released data showing Apple has once again taken the number one spot in the US smartphone market. Apple handsets using the iOS operating system accounted for 48.1 percent of US sales compared with Android’s 46.7 percent.

**Apple Leads US Sales**
The world’s most valuable company more than doubled its market share from last year’s 22.4 percent propelled by strong sales of the iPhone’s sixth edition . According to the research company, the success of Apple’s flagship phone lies in the customers’ loyalty to the brand. About 62 percent of the US iPhone 5 sales came from existing Apple owners who upgraded to the new device. Out of the rest, 13 percent came from owners of Android handsets and 6 percent from former BlackBerry users.

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“The last time we saw iOS overtake Android in the US was when the iPhone 4S was released and Apple managed to retain its lead for three consecutive periods. This time we predict that Apple will beat its previous high of 49.3% and achieve its highest ever share of the US smartphone market within the next two periods.” opined Dominic Sunnebo, global consumer insight director at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech.

In Europe Apple is still behind Android with smartphones using Google’s OS accounting for 73.9 percent of sales in Germany and 81.7 percent in Spain. The new Windows 8 phones, including Nokia’s Lumia series, managed to gain some momentum and achieved a market share of 4.7 percent in Italy.
The Financial Times quoted a mobile operator familiar with the sales in Europe, who said: “The problem has not been selling iPhones – it has been getting enough of them to sell as we have all asked for as much allocation of the new phone as possible and there is still extra demand.”

**Emerging Markets**
Apple’s presence remains weak in Brazil and China, one of the fastest growing smartphone markets, where Google is significantly ahead of its competitor. In Brazil, the iPhone has a market share of less than 1 percent compared to Android’s 56.7 percent. In urban China, where the iPhone 5 is yet to be released, 67.5 percent of the sales come from cheaper devices using Google’s OS.

!m[Loyal Customers Drive iPhone 5 Sales to Record Highs](/uploads/story/913/thumbs/pic1_inline.png)While its flagship smartphone is underperforming in China, Apple’s iPad has grabbed a dominant 71.4 percent market share of the 2.6 million tablets sold in the country. The tablets market in China grew by 62.5 percent from 1.6 million devices a year ago and is expected to expand at an even greater pace in 2013. Other major players in the Chinese tablets market are Lenovo with 10.5 percent, Ereneben with 3.6 percent and Samsung Electronics with 3.5 percent.
**Apple Fires Maps Manager**
News agency Bloomberg reported today that Apple has dismissed one of the managers responsible for its faulty mapping software. Richard Williamson, who oversaw the team working on the mapping service, was fired by Vice President Eddy Cue, according to insider sources quoted by Bloomberg. In the past month Cue has been consulting with mapping-technology experts including digital maps provider TomTom NV in order to fix the faulty Apple Maps application.
It is yet unclear who will be Williamson’s replacement. For now Apple has concentrated its efforts on removing the most obvious and stunning mistakes in its mapping service including wiping Shakespeare’s birth place off the map, turning the University of Cambridge into a wasteland and mistaking a farm for an airport.
Despite the slip ups, the iPhone 5 has been a best-seller for the company and is expected to dominate the holiday shopping season. Apple’s stock lost 0.81 percent on Tuesday and closed at $584.78 – nearly 61 percent higher than its price a year ago.

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