This chart shows why Apple is happy with its market share, and how Microsoft intends to grow
Statista has just come out with a devastatingly simple chart that explains a ton about the mobile ecosystem as a whole. The chart itself breaks down the Q2 2014 smartphone shipments for each platform by price tiers. Some of the things you'll notice were obvious before, like the fact that Apple flat out doesn't ship low-end iOS devices. But, there is some other interesting info if you combine this chart with some other recent data.
For example, data from Strategy Analytics recently showed that Android makers shipped a total of 249.6 million smartphones in Q2. Given that Statista shows 19.82% of the Android ecosystem to be high-end, that adds up to about 49.47 million high-end Android smartphones. On the other hand, Apple shipped 35.2 million iPhones, and 84.6% of those were high-end, meaning about 29.8 million high-end devices. Given how many Android makers there are, and how many different high-end devices, it is pretty impressive that all of those devices only add up to 20 million more units than Apple alone. We have said many times that Apple and Google are playing different games, and this is the proof. Google wants market share, and Apple wants profits. So, Android may have about 85% of smartphone shipments, but Apple is still extremely competitive in the high-end market, which is where you find the majority of the profits.
Of course, while the high-end market holds the profits, it has become essentially saturated, and the low-end market is where you find the growth opportunities. The majority of Windows Phone growth has come from that low-end, which is why Microsoft has been doubling down on those devices. The low-end market is how Android built itself up at first, and Microsoft is hoping to do the same with Windows Phone, which is why you see a very similar price tier breakdown between the two platforms.