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Android and iOS Continue to Dominate the Worldwide Smartphone Market with Android Shipments Just Shy of 800 Million in 2013, According to IDC

The smartphone market passed an important milestone in 2013 when worldwide shipments surpassed the 1 billion mark for the first time, driven by continued momentum from Android and iOS. According to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, Android and iOS accounted for 95.7% of all smartphone shipments in the fourth quarter of 2013 (4Q13), and for 93.8% of all smartphone shipments for the year. This marked a 4.5-point increase from the 91.2% share that the two platforms shared in 4Q12, and a 6.1-point increase from the 87.7% share they had in 2012.

"Clearly, there was strong end-user demand for both Android and iOS products during the quarter and the year," says Ramon Llamas, Research Manager with IDC's Mobile Phone team. "What stands out are the different routes Android and Apple took to meet this demand. Android relied on its long list of OEM partners, a broad and deep collection of devices, and price points that appealed to nearly every market segment. Apple's iOS, on the other hand, relied on nearly the opposite approach: a limited selection of Apple-only devices, whose prices trended higher than most. Despite these differences, both platforms found a warm reception to their respective user experiences and selection of mobile applications."

While smartphone market growth remained strong in 2013, it should be noted that the era of double-digit annual growth has only a few years remaining. In the meantime, handset vendors are doing all they can to capture demand while it is still present. Worldwide smartphone marketing campaigns continue to stay focused on flagship devices like the iPhone 5S, Galaxy Note 3, and the HTC One, yet research shows that consumer buying is rapidly shifting toward products with significantly lower price points.

"In 2013 we saw the sub-$200 smartphone market grow to 42.6% of global volume, or 430 million units," said Ryan Reith, Program Director with IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker. "While the market moves downstream to cheaper products it makes sense for Samsung and others to continue their marketing investments geared toward high-end products. These efforts build crucial brand perception while having less expensive alternatives that closely relate to these top products helps to close the deal. Samsung has done exactly this with the 'Galaxy' line. The family name is associated with Samsung's high-end products, yet there are 'Galaxy' variants offered by Samsung at much lower price points than the Note 3 and S4. This has been an important factor in how Samsung has sustained its market lead."

Operating System Highlights

Android finished the year where it began: as the clear leader in the smartphone operating system race. Samsung led all Android vendors with a commanding 39.5% share of shipments for the year. Worth watching is a crowded list of vendors jockeying for position in 2014, including Huawei, LG, Lenovo, Coolpad, and Sony. Should Lenovo's bid to acquire Motorola Mobility be realized, the new company will leap ahead of Huawei, which was the number 2 Android vendor in 2013.

iOS posted the lowest positive growth for both the quarter (6.7%) and for the year (12.9%), underperforming the overall market in both instances. Although it remains wildly popular in the smartphone market, Apple has been criticized for not offering a new low-cost iPhone nor a large screen iPhone in 2013 to compete with other OEMs. IDC believes the company will release a large-screen version in 2014, but will not altogether abandon the smaller 4" screen version of previous models.

Windows Phone posted the largest increase for both the quarter (46.7%) and the year (90.9%), with each nearly doubling the growth of the overall market. Nokia easily led all vendors with 89.3% market share, a testament to its expanding portfolio that addressed entry-level all the way up to large-screen smartphones. What remains to be seen in 2014 is how Microsoft's acquisition of Nokia's smart devices will propel volumes higher.

BlackBerry was the only operating system to realize negative year-over-year change both for the quarter (-77.0%) and for the year (-40.9%). Moreover, its legacy BB7 outpaced BB10 towards the end of the year, definitely not the results that the company had hoped for when it released BB10 in January. With new leadership, management, and a tighter focus on the enterprise market, BlackBerry may in a better position, but still finds itself having to evangelize the new platform to its user base.

 

Top Five Smartphone Operating Systems, Shipments, and Market Share, 4Q 2013 (Units in Millions)

 
Operating System    

4Q13
Shipment
Volumes

   

4Q13 Market
Share

   

4Q12
Shipment
Volumes

   

4Q12 Market
Share

   

Year-Over-
Year Change

Android 226.1 78.1% 161.1 70.3% 40.3%
iOS 51.0 17.6% 47.8 20.9% 6.7%
Windows Phone 8.8 3.0% 6.0 2.6% 46.7%
BlackBerry 1.7 0.6% 7.4 3.2% -77.0%
Others 2.0 0.7% 6.7 2.9% -70.1%
Total 289.6 100.0% 229.0 100.0% 26.5%
 

Source: IDC Worldwide Mobile Phone Tracker, February 12, 2014

 

In addition to the table above, an interactive graphic showing average selling price (ASP) for the top 4 smartphone operating systems over the previous four years is available here. The chart is intended for public use in online news articles and social media. Instructions on how to embed this graphic can be found by viewing this press release on IDC.com.

 

Top Five Smartphone Operating Systems, Shipments, and Market Share, 2013 (Units in Millions)

 
Operating System    

2013
Shipment
Volumes

   

2013 Market
Share

   

2012
Shipment
Volumes

   

2012 Market
Share

   

Year-Over-
Year Change

Android 793.6 78.6% 500.1 69.0% 58.7%
iOS 153.4 15.2% 135.9 18.7% 12.9%
Windows Phone 33.4 3.3% 17.5 2.4% 90.9%
BlackBerry 19.2 1.9% 32.5 4.5% -40.9%
Others 10.0 1.0% 39.3 5.4% -74.6%
Total 1009.6 100.0% 725.3 100.0% 39.2%
 

Source: IDC Worldwide Mobile Phone Tracker, February 12, 2014

 

About IDC Trackers

IDC Tracker products provide accurate and timely market size, vendor share, and forecasts for hundreds of technology markets from more than 100 countries around the globe. Using proprietary tools and research processes, IDC's Trackers are updated on a semiannual, quarterly, and monthly basis. Tracker results are delivered to clients in user-friendly excel deliverables and on-line query tools. The IDC Tracker Charts app allows users to view data charts from the most recent IDC Tracker products on their iPhone and iPad.

For more information about IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, please contact Kathy Nagamine at 650-350-6423 or knagamine@idc.com.

About IDC

International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community to make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. More than 1,000 IDC analysts provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 110 countries. In 2014, IDC celebrates its 50th anniversary of providing strategic insights to help clients achieve their key business objectives. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and events company. You can learn more about IDC by visiting www.idc.com.

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