Android surges, Windows Phone share continues to fall with latest Kantar numbers

Vu Anh Nguyen

Lumia Windows Phone

While Microsoft is not dropping support for its mobile OSes, the company has, at least temporarily, switch focus to other areas, and it shows. The latest Kantar report on smartphone market share is in, and it, unsurprisingly, has depict a generally bleak picture about Windows phone, despite flattering numbers for its competitors.

Kantar provides smartphone market share statistics up to May 2016 for a number of main markets worldwide, including the U.S., Germany, Spain, and China, among others. Overall, Android is leading the pack as usual at 76.5% share in five biggest markets in Europe, “nearly four out of five smartphone purchases” in China, and 68.5% of the US market. Apple is firmly at the second place, with market shares in the two digits; you may have to go a bit more microscopic, however, to get to Windows Phone’s numbers.

Specifically, Windows Phone is shown to have lost 0.3% of its market share in the U.S. in one month, dropping from 1.6% in April to 1.3% in May, seemingly at the gains of Android and, surprisingly, Blackberry. Things are not any brighter across the Atlantic Ocean: Microsoft’s mobile OS lost a whooping 0.7% share in Great Britain to 5.1% in the same period, and around 0.2 to 0.4% in EU countries like Germany, Spain, and even Italy, where it once had a leg up compare to Apple’s iOS.

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Surprisingly, China is the only place where Windows Phone has seen any gains, from 0.4% to 0.6% share, while iOS sees a drop. Traditionally, China has been the weakest market for Microsoft when it comes to mobile, as the company neither has the advantage of mass manufacturers like Android, nor the mindshare of Cupertino. While Microsoft’s relationship with China has seemingly improved this year, it’s hard to say whether this is the cause of the positive share gains. Finally, new quirky phones from Japanese makers seemingly didn’t manage to move the needle significantly, as Windows Phone market share stays at 0.1% for the island nation.

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Overall, the numbers from Kantar, while nothing to brag about for Windows users on mobile, is nevertheless expected as Microsoft continues perfecting Windows on PC and working on its vision of unification. There’s a silver lining in the upcoming “Surface Phone”; only time will tell if Redmond will ever have the chance to get a meaningful market share in the mobile space again.