Apple takes a bite out of Android in 2014


Here’s some news that will likely stir up the “which is better” debate (which ever seems to end). It was just revealed by research firm “Kantar Worldpanel ComTech” that, mainly thanks to the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, Apple’s smartphone sales in the last quarter are on a roll and come at the expense of Android’s market share.

And in other news, nobody still cares about Windows Phone and BlackBerry.

Android loses share in the U.S. for first time since 2013

Here is a recent chart from which shows the global market share for all main mobile operating systems (i.e. Android, iOS, Windows Phone, BlackBerry, etc). Android is still in the lead, followed by iOS, but all the rest have a long way to go to catch up.

Apple - Global OS Market Share

Android is way out in front globally, but in some markets it’s a different story.

Kantar’s latest report indicates that in the U.S. at least between September and November 2014, Android actually lost market share for the first time since 2013. Is that a surprise? Perhaps not since Apple’s new smartphones enjoyed huge momentum when released in September, going on to sell 10 million in the opening weekend despite a severe shortage of supply.

While remaining the dominant global OS, Android’s market share dropped in most European markets and in the US where the decline was the first since September 2013 – Carolina Milanesi, Chief of Research at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech

RELATED: read the Kantar press release.

Android has of course had large screen devices for years, so it’s not really a surprise that many iPhone owners (or prospective owners) were waiting until September last year to get the new, larger devices. Since the fruit-shaped company always announces its new models at the same time every year, there’s a lot of pent-up demand which is suddenly released helping to drive up sales. However, this year it seems that the period of supply shortage has definitely extended much longer than previous years – in many of the Thai mobile operator shops, there’s still short supply of the gold iPhone in 16 GB capacity, and all colours in the 128 GB capacity for the iPhone 6 Plus.

Kantar also says that the rate of Android to Apple switches has remained almost static at 18%. The research firm also claims Android’s share has declined by 2% in the U.S. year on year, from 50.4 % of sales in the three months to November 2013, to a slightly smaller 48.4 % this year. Apple’s iOS managed to increase its share in the U.S. by 4.3% to 47.4%.

Apple stealing share from Windows Phone and BlackBerry

It seems that iOS (the operating system found on Apple’s iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch) has also taken share from the other smartphone platforms out there in the U.S. – notably Windows Phone which dropped 1.6% and BlackBerry. The “others” category also fell 0.4% over the period that Kantar measured.

So it’s looking pretty rosy for iOS and great for Android, but everyone else must be getting pretty fed up by now – can Windows Phone for instance every manage more than a measly few percent of market share?

In the UK and other European markets it’s a similar story; in the UK Android dropped more – by 6.7% from 56.4% of the market in 2013 to 49.7% in November 2014. Apple’s iOS saw a huge raise and gained 12.2% to 42.5%. Windows Phone also fell from 10.6% to 6%. Not good for Microsoft…

RELATED: Apple dominates Christmas smartphone sales.

Let us know in the comments below what you think about the increase in iOS market share.

Does it matter? Is it good for competition? What about Windows Phone and BlackBerry…?



  1. Question – what’s the point of a chart that ends in Q1 2014 on a story that’s talking about Q4 2014 sales figures?

    Separately, Windows phones may not be doing well, but I’d be interested to know if Windows tablets are taking share from Android/Apple suddenly. They do seem to be everywhere suddenly (not Windows RT, obviously, but proper Windows on cheap tablets with quad-core Atoms in them at the low end, and ones with faster core chips, like the Surface Pro 3 at the high end…)

  2. Steve Kyte on

    For around thirty years PCs have had a massive market share over Apple and if I’m not mistaken still do. Are you saying that this indicates that the products are better than Apple’s or perhaps that PC buyers are just mis informed sheep ? Now Your the situation is reversed with mobile products. I could write a whole article on how Apple care duping and ripping off customers but I won’t. Your article is of no worth whatsoever and just makes you look even more like the sad Apple fan boy that you are, since I know that you hate PCs (as do I). You lend little credibility to this website as long as you continue to write your very immature emotive rubbish.