Canalys released its fourth quarter stats and it was another big three months for Google's open source OS, Android. Of the 216.5 million smartphones shipped worldwide from October through December, a whopping 69%
were Android flavored. Of the 438.1 million units shipped of all handsets, including featurephones, 34% of them were Android and 11% were powered by iOS. Speaking of the entire handset market, shipments were flat year-over-year, while those for smartphones rose 37%. Smartphones made up nearly half of all handsets shipped.
Samsung's shipments have been helped by the Samsung GALAXY Note II
With 62.9 million units shipped in the quarter, Samsung was the top OEM for the period with a 29% share. Two phones, the Samsung Galaxy S III
and the Samsung GALAXY Note II
have been in demand, helping the manufacturer to achieve its share. With a 22.1% slice of the global smartphone pie on the fourth quarter, Apple finished second. Chinese smartphone producers Huawei
surprisingly rounded out the top five. There was a big gap between the 47.8 million phones shipped by number two Apple and the 11.8 million shipped by Huawei, which was number three. Lenovo edged out Sony to place in the top five and had remarkable growth of 216% over Q4 of 2011. For the year, Samsung finished on top, besting Apple by 74 million units with Nokia third.
After the 69.2% of the global smartphone market in Q4 2012 that belonged to Android, iOS was next with 22.1%. There was a big drop after that with BlackBerry and Microsoft making up 3.5% and 2.4
% of the market respectively. That leaves Nokia on the bottom of the top five with a 1.5% share.
BlackBerry, Microsoft and Nokia, as well as other Android vendors, have strategies and devices in place to attack, but the task is daunting to say the least. When we look at the whole of 2012, Nokia remained the number three smart phone vendor, shipping 35 million units, but Apple in second place shipped 101 million more handsets. First-placed Samsung shipped 74 million more than Apple – the gaps are colossal. But there is still a big opportunity as smart phone penetration increases around the world. Vendors left in the wake of the top vendors must at the very least improve their portfolios, time-to-market and marketing, as well as communicate their differentiators. Microsoft, BlackBerry and other new OS entrants, such as Mozilla, must make the OS switch as simple as possible and drive and localize their respective app and content ecosystems-Pete Cunningham, Principal Analyst
Samsung and Android were on top in Q4