Windows Phone market share continues to decline, can Windows 10 for phones change things?

Hammad Saleem

Windows Phone market share continues to decline, can Windows 10 for phones change things?

Microsoft’s smartphone operating system, Windows Phone, continues to drop in market share across the globe, except a few regions, as per a new report from the market research firm Kantar. The plummeting sales fell even more in several major markets, except a France and Germany, where the operating system saw a slight increase in its market share. 

Last year, Microsoft released major software updates for their dwindling operating system which introduced some much needed features, such as Cortana, the company’s answer to Siri and Google Now, etc. The company was even quick enough to introduce improvements to the camera department with the Lumia Denim update, but these were for a selected pair of handsets. In the last quarter, Microsoft did focus on targeting the entry-level market and release smartphones like the Lumia 535 and Lumia 532 to gain market share, especially in developing markets.

“Windows Phone, soon to be Windows 10, had seen some success across Europe in 2013 but continued to struggle in the latest period, recording minimal growth only in France and Germany.” says Kantar in the report.

Coming over to the figures from Kantar, starting with the United States, Windows Phone is currently residing at 3.8 percent, a decline of 0.4 percentage points compared to the same quarter in 2013, but a slight increase if you compare it to November. The company has a slightly strong presence on European shores as market share of the operating system is in double digits in France and Italy, 11.6 and 12.7 percent respectively.

The Redmond-based company fails to maintain a strong presence in the biggest markets in the world, China, where it still has a minute 0.7 percent market share but things may change with Windows 10 for phones which was showcased at an event last month. The company is expected to release a technical preview of the mobile OS later this month, with its launch later this year.

Android and iOS continues to be the leading operating systems, with iOS slightly overtaking Android for the first time since 2012 in the US by a slim margin. On the European shores, Android’s share declined by 3.8 percent year-on-year to 66.1 percent, while iOS saw a share increase of 6.2 percent in the continent.