The iPhone Remains the Top Pick in U.S. and Japan, Android Growth Slowing


Kantar Worldpanel released its Q4 2012 data today while Android devices (essentially Samsung) are most popular around the world, iPhones are the choice for consumers in the U.S. and Japan. In fact in Japan iPhone outpaces Android by almost 35 points. The Kantar Worldpanel results and TechCrunch’s analysis also brings up a warning sign, this time for Samsung—can Android smartphone growth be sustained or has the world hit smartphone saturation?

In the U.S. iPhones claim the top spot in Q4 2012 market share data with 51.2% (an increase of 6.3% over the previous year). Android still in second place with 44.2, but down 0.6% versus last year. In Japan iOS is the pick of 66.2% of consumers (Android 31.9%), there is no comparison for 2011 because Kantar Worldpanel only started tracking Japan in the middle of 2012.

The chart below gives all the details on the Kantar results:

Kantar chart

An additional point, however, that was shared with TechCrunch is much, much more interesting—smartphones are nearly the majority of devices in many locations.

According to TC and Kantar, the UK the highest smartphone percentages—61%—meaning most mobile phone owners own a smartphone. So in the UK, fewer people will be smartphone newcomers, everyone else will be in a cycle of replacing a smartphone in the future. Here’s how the rest of the world pans out:

  • Australia 54%
  • France 46%.
  • Italy 45%
  • Spain 45%
  • U.S. 42%
  • China 39%
  • Germany 38%
  • Japan 24%

I’d wager that by this time next year we’ll see France, Italy, and Spain all in smartphone majority territory and the US might hit that point in late 2014, 2015 almost certainly. Not only will this drive changes in buying behavior (and therefore profits at Samsung and Apple), but also how much data mobile devices consume, and (maybe more importantly) a demand for being able to nearly everything from a mobile device (that you can do now on your computer).

And if iOS continues to dominate in the U.S. (and Japanese) markets, then we’ll also see a strong trend toward that “mobile friendly” push really mean “iPhone friendly” and that will be a most interesting time for sure.

Via: TechCrunch

Photo from West Midlands Police via Flickr (see yours in the pile?).

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  • Upgrayedd

    Disqus is so damn horrible on my iphone!!! I can only see 3 lines at a time thats not scrollable. Spellcheck does not work. Sometimes I cannot type or delete what im typing and I am

    • Upgrayedd

      Once I moved my curser when After I typed “I am” typing did not work. I am completly lucky that I was able to send that last message because I already typed the freaking thing and a comment to this article 3 times. Does anyone else have these problems?

      • Pacomacman

        Agreed, and commented on this before. The old system was much better and faster!

        • Tris Hussey

          Thanks folks. There were uptime problems (I gather) with the last system…all of them have their quirks for sure.

          • Upgrayedd

            I’m glad you guys agree. Trying to post something is becoming a frusturating nightmare. For like 2 weeks I couldn’t even view comments on app advice using disqus. They better get their act together!

          • Pacomacman

            Yes, god help you if you read through your post and realise you’ve made a spelling mistake. If you attempt to go back and try to edit any key presses are ignored. You have to click out of the editor, then back in it again before it responds to key input again.

      • Kimk69

        Yeah, it sucks. Just learned to get by as best as I can with it.
        But it sucks. I liked the old, old one before they started switching it up. This is like the third different type of comments in about a year or a little more. Liked the easy first one. Don’t remember, maybe it was vanilla. And I sware there’s less comments then there used to be unless its for other reasons.

  • Pacomacman

    Make up your mind, only 2 days ago you ran an article saying LG had overtaken Apple as #2 in the US. I actually commented saying Apple was #1 with 51% so nice to see you proving me right!

    • Tris Hussey

      That was for ALL handsets, this is smartphones only…rather confusing I concur.