Going by Apple’s profits this year, the smartphone/tablet market is becoming a one-man game. Apple has surged ahead like anything and it’s success so far, seems undaunted. New stats reveal that Apple’s increased market share has meant a fall in other phones’ fortunes.
Looking at the figures, even Android despite all its popularity, affordability and features has slid down to 42.6 percent this year from more than 54 percent last year. RIM’s cursed fortunes are still haunting it and it has come down from almost 15 percent to just 5.7 percent. The surprising part is that despite selling Lumias and Omnias like anything, the WP7 platform has also slid from 3.2 percent to 1.5 percent. The fate of others including Bada and Symbian is not even worth a discussion.
So, firstly, how has Apple managed to wield its Black magic over the market? Two words, actually one – iPhone 4S. Well, firstly, Apple’s iPhone 4S despite having a sky-high price tag still appeals to every Joe and Jane. Secondly, this is the first time Apple had three iPhones on the market the iPhone 3G, iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S. Finally, Steve Jobs’ death in October 2011, created hype for the iPhone 4S like never before.
Also the scene with Android in the meantime wasn’t so sappy. After numerous launches in the first half of the year, Google unveiled its next Android OS – the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich OS. Ever since then, handset manufacturers are waiting on an Android update for their current devices and engineering their upcoming ones to the next version of Android. This has created a lag where the iPhone 4S has picked up market share.
Windows Phone OS had created a lot of hype in the start of 2011, but slowly, as people got to know they understand that it has a long way to go when it comes to matching up with Android and iOS.
RIM, Symbian and Bada, the less said the better.
So, the main concern here is – is the smartphone market becoming a set market of a few players? Is the space for new players to enter the market narrowing down? Are giants like Apple and Samsung going to eat up the opposition and rule the market in the future?
Well, the smartphone market is an ever changing market, as is evident from the figures above. Yes, Apple and Samsung rule for now and it is difficult to assess if any OS will be able to match up with them. But who has seen the future? The Ice Cream Sandwich is yet to get into the hands of the average consumers, so the jury isn’t out yet.