Kantar: Windows Phone managed to maintain share despite Christmas iPhone onslaught

KANTAR-150The latest Kantar World Panel report for the 3 months ending January 2014 is now out, and for Windows Phone it is mainly a story of steady market share rather that month on month growth.

In UK this meant Windows Phone went from 11.3% to 11.3% market share,  in the December and January report, and for the 5 largest nations in Europe from 10.3 to 10.1% market share over the same period.

Of course the Christmas period is mainly a bonanza for iPhone, putting pressure on Windows Phone, but the Nokia Lumia 520 has been an unexpected continuing success.

Kantar notes  Windows Phone has managed to hold onto double digit share across Europe for four consecutive months with its success driven by Nokia’s budget Lumia 520 which was the fourth highest selling handset in Britain during the past three months, only just behind the Apple 5C. Microsoft recently said the handset was the 3rd best selling smartphone in UK in December, presumably just behind the iPhone 5S and 5C, which is quite and achievement.

Dominic Sunnebo, strategic insight director at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, comments: “Nokia has continued its successful tactic of sucking up remaining featurephone owners across Europe. Even in Britain, where smartphone penetration is at 70%, there are over 14 million featurephone consumers for it to target. At some point Nokia will have to start making serious inroads into the smartphone competition, but for the time being its strategy in Europe is working. Crucial for Nokia will be its ability to keep low-end owners loyal and upgrade them to mid to high-end models.”

Smartphone % penetration in Great Britain stood at 70% in January, with 86% of devices sold in the past three months being smartphones.

Currently Windows Phone sales are a pretty good proxy for Nokia smartphone sales, and Kantar reveals that Nokia is likely in the 3rd position in Europe, with Samsung having 39.5% of sales over the 3 months ending January 2014, Apple having 19%,  Nokia presumably 10.1%, followed by Sony at 9.4%, LG at 6.9%, Wiko at 2% and Motorola at 1.7%.  Year on Year both Samsung and Apple are down (22.9 to 19%) while Windows Phone sales grew from 6.1 to 10.1%, making it the fastest growing OS.

It will of course remain to be seen if Windows Phone can maintain the momentum, but at the very least it appears that Apple may be in danger of being passed sometime this year Europe-wide, and that with Windows Phone maintaining a 10% market share over more than a quarter developers who want to target Europeans should be paying much more attention to the OS.

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See the full report here.

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