Windows Phone and Android are the hot platforms in South Africa as iOS and BlackBerry show no growth

Windows Phone and Android are the hot platforms in South Africa as iOS and BlackBerry show no growth
In what could be a very negative sign for BlackBerry, growth has disappeared in one of the countries that still holds the platform in high standing. To make matters worse, Windows Phone is picking up momentum. We are talking about South Africa. In June of 2012, South Africans voted BlackBerry the "coolest brand," "Coolest Cell Phone," and "Coolest Hi-Tech Gadget" of 2012. During the second quarter of last year, BlackBerry was the number one smartphone platform in the country and the company had 6 of the top 10 smartphone models. To show you how highly the BlackBerry name was thought of in South Africa as recently as last year, the 6 athletes from the country that received gold medals in the 2012 Summer Olympics each received a limited edition BlackBerry Bold 9900 in gold.

But what has happened to BlackBerry since then? According to numbers supplied by Vodacomm, one of South Africa's largest carriers, the number of BlackBerry owners on its network remained flat between May and July at 3.1 million. At the same time, the number of Windows Phone subscribers soared 47% from May 2013 to July 2013, rising from 150,000 to 220,000. Yes, the platform had a much smaller base it was starting from, but the momentum has clearly shifted. This is the kind of statistic that both Microsoft CEO Steven Ballmer and Nokia CEO Stephen Elop should be crowing about.

Another company showing no growth in the country was Apple with iOS subscribers staying flat from May to July at 600,000 users for Vodacomm. Lastly, Android showed some decent, if not spectacular growth, as its subscriber base on the pipeline rose to 1.2 million from 1 million for a 20% increase.

Nokia certainly has the low-end Nokia Lumia 520 to thank for its strong growth in the area. At this stage, even a low priced Apple iPhone Lite seems destined to be priced too high to compete with Windows Phone in this region. Microsoft and Nokia have found a niche of the market, in one country at least, that they can grow with and at the same time, hurt Apple and BlackBerry. In Redmond and in Espoo this is called a "perfect storm".

source: MyBroadband via WMPoweruser



1. joeymk

Posts: 101; Member since: Jan 26, 2012

With the Lumia 625 this will be even better.

2. Rehankhan

Posts: 323; Member since: Oct 24, 2012

there are already so many better phones than lumia 625 in this price range

3. PhansMuneeb

Posts: 371; Member since: Jan 28, 2012

There are many phones but none of them provide with smooth experience and durability of a NOKIA.

7. muhsen

Posts: 281; Member since: Jun 07, 2012

in another parallel universe ?? what world does another phone have 4G ,4.7" supersensitive touch screen ,shoots 1080p@30fps and comes with a price tag of 220 euros (+ taxes) ???

9. whoyton2

Posts: 142; Member since: Jun 19, 2013

Hahah a 4.7 screen which has one of the lowest resolution on any smartphone and even a camera which many reviews and hands on say is sub par for Nokia.....c'mon dude the 625 is a poor Nokia offering! I would get the 720 or 520 over it any day!

19. timukh

Posts: 295; Member since: Feb 04, 2013

Dude at 220 euros there are no big companies (LG, Samsung, Sony etc) that provide screen resolution higher than 800x480. Even galaxy grand (330 euros) has the same resoution at 5 inches. And also not everyone wants an hd screen. High end phones only account for 20% of smartphones sold. Rest are all medium to low end. So I find lumia 625 to be a decent competitor at that price.

66. haseebzahid

Posts: 1853; Member since: Feb 22, 2012

Chinese ofcourse :P

68. akki20892

Posts: 3902; Member since: Feb 04, 2013

U forgot 60hz refresh rate on screen.

8. EXkurogane

Posts: 863; Member since: Mar 07, 2013

Not at all. If you want the best example against the 625 from your beloved Samsung with similar price, it is Galaxy Win/Grand Quattro. You also see 800X480 on 4.7' screen, but TFT screen + no LTE + Snapdragon 200 (underpowered cortex A5 cores). HAH. Try harder,

10. whoyton2

Posts: 142; Member since: Jun 19, 2013

Where in that sentence did he state samsung....are you blind?

11. EXkurogane

Posts: 863; Member since: Mar 07, 2013

Come on, i know you and him (and quite a few more, like SakuraAkino) are both Samsung fans, im a regular here. If im wrong, then the both of you are at least hardcore android fans. Im just giving an example of competitor's products (at the same price range and screen size), and compare it to the 625. Even though i dont like Samsung i still know about their products, far more than LG. And it makes sense to compare any other products to a Samsung because Samsung is the leader in smartphone market. But, being the leader doesnt mean they are good in everything.

14. WHoyton1

Posts: 1635; Member since: Feb 21, 2013

Your right I'm a android fan but not a Samsung one, I like Samsung but not like a fanboy, why do you hate them what have they done wrong?

17. EXkurogane

Posts: 863; Member since: Mar 07, 2013

I dont actually hate something with passion most of the time. But, if you want to make a claim, then back it up with examples or proof. Making a claim is different from giving an opinion. You just said 625 is a poor offering in comment #9, especially the screen resolution; personally i dont buy such devices either, but when you compare to competitor's products at the same price range, they are also the same, just as bad, or maybe even worse. It is no where even close to being a poor offering considering it packs LTE.

21. iStabrak

Posts: 21; Member since: Jul 26, 2013

Only in one country they are doing well! Selling budget phones will not get Nokia no-where! Moving away from BB to a closed OS Nokia, surely after a few weeks will they be banging there heads and regreting this! They thought it would be an open source likee BB or Symbian! They can't afford Apple iPhones in 3rd world countries. Android still dominates and will be the King!

28. papss unregistered

The problem with your statement is that's its not just one hear of Russia? There are others that wp8 is growing too. Not everyone needs or wants open source tweakfest my space. It's pretty generic looking along with most of the phone offerings. how about you back your face away from googles generals to see what else is out there you might change your tune. ,

29. freebee269

Posts: 542; Member since: Aug 10, 2012

android got their market status by selling budget phones. lumia 520 has been selling out at alot of places.

40. iStabrak

Posts: 21; Member since: Jul 26, 2013

Android Samsung gives you freedom. Nokia won't.

44. papss unregistered

The normal consumer could give a rats a$$ about the freedom that you think you need. They want something that just works and that's not android, which might I add is the same grid of generic icons that have been used for six years.

45. Credo

Posts: 749; Member since: Apr 19, 2012

Freedom? Lmao, the way Google is controlling you and everybody else, just like Microsoft does, and Apple, don't say things that don't make any sense .... Best regards!


Posts: 4851; Member since: Apr 13, 2012

MS doesn't give freedom to what they can have and install unlike Android does. MsWp is much restricted than iOS. Lmfao ®

61. Credo

Posts: 749; Member since: Apr 19, 2012

Windows Phone is more open then iOS, you know that ;-) Best regards!

36. jellmoo

Posts: 2645; Member since: Oct 31, 2011

Wait... What? Neither BB10 nor BB 7 are open source. And for that matter, do you think that the casual consumer cares about open source, or for that matter even knows what open source really is?

75. Just.Me

Posts: 23; Member since: Apr 24, 2013

The problem with the declining blackberry sales here is south africa has nothing to do with the build quality or price of the phone. Its because of the blackerry internet service. Previously, R60 per month, Roughly $8 gave you unlimited bbm text, web browsing and even downloads on a blackberry smartphone. That provided the cheapest internet in the country. Now, Vodacom and MTN and Cell C and even heita and virgin mobile has capped the data to around 100MB. Now BB10 doesnt support BIS even. With talks on BBM going cross platform many people are turning to windows phone or android. The free 2 year accidental insurance from samsung for the SG S4 is also taking people away from blackberry

4. AndroidShiz

Posts: 154; Member since: Nov 08, 2011

Sounds like Google needs to strictly push the Nexus 4 over there. Give them the best Android experience, a phone that seems to keep working no matter what, and often better, smoother than higher priced phones like the S4 or HTC One- for cheap, especially since the Nexus 5 is right around the corner, the 4 should be even cheaper to produce.

12. EXkurogane

Posts: 863; Member since: Mar 07, 2013

Nexus 4 only costs low in the USA, and countries than can access it. If google pushes nexus devices in South Africa it will still cost at least 150% more than what Americans pay for a Nexus device.

18. timukh

Posts: 295; Member since: Feb 04, 2013

I agree with you. Nexus 4 only costs less in a few particular countries. In India it the price of a nexus 4 is over $500 which makes it nothing better than the rest of the phones at that price range.

30. papss unregistered

Too bad the n4 ( which I had and sent back to google) offers what I believe to be an amazingly generic experience in the vanilla 4.2.2.. I hated looking at it, use it, show it off,,, it was so boring to use. I'd much rather have a skinned sense or touch wiz (which I normally hate).

59. Whateverman

Posts: 3295; Member since: May 17, 2009

Why didn't you customize it, to give it the look you wanted? It can look like ant OS you want, even WP8.

67. papss unregistered

I tried the WP launcher but it was a crappy imposter.. It was not an alternative unfortunately. I tried many others too, it honestly wasn't my cup of tea. I truly prefer wp8.

70. uchihakurtz

Posts: 428; Member since: Nov 12, 2012

Well the whole point of a Nexus phone is for developing, so the looks is just the basic Android, and yes it looks boring. But another point of a Nexus phone is rooting and the vast options of custom ROM. You can get better visual when trying custom ROMs like UXylon, Paranoid Android, AOKP, CyanogenMod, etc...

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