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Who’s on top of the Smartphone market?

I wanted to know which operating system was on top of the heap as of the moment. Fortunately, Larry Dignan of ZDNet shared his notes on this from the IDC Worldwide Mobile Phone Tracker.

Results? For the first quarter of 2012, Android has a dominant 59 percent of the smartphone market worldwide. That’s a commanding lead, representing some 81 million smartphones. Take note though, that this is likely fueled by low-cost units. Then again, 40 percent of these are made by Samsung. Regardless, Android sales have soared 145 percent from the same time last year. Wow.

Of course you know who the happy second-placer is at 18 percent. Yup, iOS devices such as the iPhone 4S. Apple is a happy camper because whereas Android devices are shared across dozens of manufacturers, Apple owns this entire piece of the pie. Plus, their profit margins per phone are astronomical compared to Samsung et al. That’s why Apple has so much cash on hand.

Apple’s smartphone sales also rose some 88.7 percent from last year. That’s really something. Especially for a high margin product.

And the others? Well, other smartphone systems did not fare as well, although sales for Windows Phone devices did grow by some 27 percent. Keep that up, Nokia/Windows Phone. Nokia is probably banking on the fact that their killer Lumia 900 was yet to launch during this period.

Symbian phones took 6.8 percent of the market, while BlackBerry took 6.4 percent. Both were down, but let’s see if they got a thing or two up their sleeves.

I guess it’s congratulations to Apple and Samsung then? And for the others, keep pushing!



Art is a long-time editor for a number of technology publications. He is a Palanca-winning writer (he got lucky) whose day job is to try to be as serious as possible while being a management consultant and lecturer. His favorite noodles: chapchae.

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