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European carriers say Lumia phones can’t compete with iPhone and Android

Tuesday, April 17th, 2012

Nokia’s attempt to regain the traction in the mobile market is turning out to be more difficult than the company once thought. Four major wireless carriers in Europe have said that Nokia’s Lumia smartphones are “not good enough” to compete with Apple’s iPhone or Samsung’s Galaxy smartphones, Reuters reported on Tuesday. Nokia bet big on Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform last year, however the gamble has yet to pay off according to the report. “No one comes into the store and asks for a Windows phone,” said an executive in charge of mobile devices at a European operator. The company is now playing catch up with Apple and Google after suffering a huge decline that hurt its image in the high-end market, and according to Reuters’s sources, Windows Phone might be making matters worse. “Nokia have given themselves a double challenge: to restore their credibility in terms of making hardware smartphones and succeed with the Microsoft Windows operating system, which lags in the market,” the executive said. “If the Lumia with the same hardware came with Android in it and not Windows, it would be much easier to sell.”

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Microsoft to release Windows Phone 7.5 in China on March 21st

Thursday, March 15th, 2012

Microsoft on Wednesday began sending out invitations to the press for the company’s Windows Phone 7.5 Refresh launch event in China. According to Liveside, the event will be held in Beijing on March 21st. While the invitation doesn’t mention any specific handsets, HTC recently launched the Titan — becoming the first manufacturer to release a Window Phone device in China. Nokia CEO and president Stephen Elop will also reportedly host a separate event on March 28th. The company is expected to launch three Lumia devices, most likely running the refreshed Windows Phone 7.5 operating system. As of the fourth quarter of 2011, Nokia controls 16.1% of the Chinese mobile market, second only to Samsung.

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Mobile apps to top 2 million, 500 million sub-$100 smartphones in use this year, firm says

Thursday, January 19th, 2012

While technology enthusiasts look forward to a number of high-end smartphone announcements vendors are preparing for Mobile World Congress next month, 2012 will see entry-level smartphones become more popular than ever. Market research firm Deloitte estimates that the number of sub-$100 smartphones in use globally will surpass 500 million this year, and by the end of 2012 there will be 200 million NFC-equipped devices in the hands of consumers. The firm also sees apps continuing to play a huge role in the mobile market, with the number of available apps set to top 2 million later this year. ”The number of apps available reached one million in December 2011 and will double again by the end of 2012,” Deloitte TMT analyst Jolyon Barker said in a statement. ”However, the proportion that are paid for remains small. Only a fifth of downloaded apps sell more than 1,000 copies and only a tiny proportion of unpromoted apps will ever become successful.” The firm’s full press release follows below.

Deloitte analyses top trends for the telecoms industry for 2012

17 January 2012

  • The number of £65 “smartphones” in use will reach 500 million.
  • The number of apps available will surpass two million by year-end 2012, double the total as of December 2011.
  • The volume of data sent between devices via short-range wireless connections, bypassing the Web, will double in 2012.

The Technology, Media and Telecommunications (TMT) practice at Deloitte today announces its predictions for the telecoms sector in 2012, forecasting that the over half a billion low-cost smartphones (costing less than $100, or £65) will be in use by the end of 2012.

Jolyon Barker, global lead for Deloitte’s Technology, Media and Telecommunications Industry, comments: “This year’s predictions cover a range of topics, including the future for apps, demand for data and the rise of devices with near-field communications technology.

“The number of apps available reached one million in December 2011 and will double again by the end of 2012. However, the proportion that are paid for remains small. Only a fifth of downloaded apps sell more than 1,000 copies and only a tiny proportion of unpromoted apps will ever become successful.”

Simon Kerton-Johnson, lead telecoms partner at Deloitte, adds: “The number of devices with embedded near-field communications technology is set to soar to 200 million by the end of 2012. NFC – the transfer of small amounts of data over a very short distance – has been dominated by the ‘wave and pay’ notion of embedding a credit card into a mobile phone but the application of the technology is likely to have a wider reach.”

The $100 (£65) “smartphone” reaches its first half billion

Smartphones are typically considered high-end devices; yet by year-end 2012, at least 500 million $100 (£65) “smartphones” will be in use. These devices will have the look and feel of smartphones, sporting touch screens or full qwerty keyboards. $100 smartphones will have weaker processors, less memory, slower connectivity options, lower resolution cameras – but purchasers of these devices will be happy to trade off lower specifications for lower price. The rise of the $100 (£65) smartphone is comparable to the growth of the netbook, which offered a low-cost and low-powered alternative to standard laptops. The biggest demand for $100 smartphones is likely to be in emerging markets where Internet access is low but the desire for communication and information services is growing. Yet, the $100 (£65) smartphone could also appeal to users in mature markets where it could become a perfect teenage ‘starter’ phone. This will put pressure on the supply chain to cut the price of components but also presents a challenge for app developers as low-cost smartphone owners are less likely to want to pay for downloads.

So many apps – so little to download

The demands on the developer are increasing as the variety of smartphones and tablets increases. To reach a global target market, a developer may have to make 360 different variants which has almost called time on the part-time app developer. With so much choice on offer, app-store providers should consider ways to improve and assure the quality of the products on offer. Stores should look to differentiate by considering subscription models focused on different genres, or selected by editors, that would create ‘app bundles’. As smartphones go truly mass market, there will be a growing demand for local language, local content apps.

Web Bypass: delivering connectivity without the internet

The strain on networks, both fixed and mobile, is set to force more people to turn to short-range wireless connections to transfer data. Such technology has been pervasive before in the form of infrared and Bluetooth connectivity and is set for a resurgence in the form of web bypass – cutting out the need to connect to the internet at all – as the need for the quick transfer of data between devices and users grows. Roughly one per cent of all wireless data exchanged in 2012 will be between devices rather than routed over the internet, double the level of 2011. With telecoms companies balancing the need to invest in network improvement with the demands of customers for data capacity, web bypass will emerge as a third network option alongside fixed broadband and mobile for transferring information.

NFC and mobile devices: payments and more!

Many people remain uncomfortable with the notion of using a phone to pay for items and consumer perception about the security and battery-draining aspects of NFC need to be overcome. Even if 2012 turns out to be no more than a “transitional year” for mobile payments, the NFC chips will not go to waste. There are thousands of applications of NFC – from gambling, to games to healthcare – that could build up a head of steam over the course of the year, even if the media continues to focus on the ‘digital wallet.’

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Eldar Murtazin gives RIM six months to win back customers, says Nokia is selling its soul to Microsoft

Tuesday, January 3rd, 2012

Murtazin is a guy well known for scoring handsets way ahead of even their debut showing. He also has an uncanny knack of knowing exactly what mobile companies are plotting — sometimes. He’s a guy worth listening to, especially for his often outspoken views on company failings. In his latest (lengthy) editorial, Eldar Murtazin takes umbrage with two companies that have weathered a tricky 2011; RIM and Nokia. He reckons that the BlackBerry makers have around six to eight months to convince people and the markets that there’s still a future — a worrying deadline given that we’re not expecting to see its OS successor until the second half of 2012. Regardless of when these long-awaited QNX handsets do appear, Murtazin maintains that even if they arrived with the kind of OS that dreams are made of, they are unlikely to recover the ground lost in recent years — especially on corporate handsets.

However, he saves most of his ire for the Nokia-Microsoft partnership, claiming that Nokia executives have lost their ability to sensibly judge the state of the mobile world. With apparently the “most valued” engineers and developers leaving the good ship Nokia, the shuttering of Nokia’s own Ovi sync services are apparently talismanic of a shift closer to Microsoft. Murtazin thinks that Nokia CEO Elop has only two aims while at the helm; to ruin the company’s chances of recovering in the mobile market and increasing Microsoft’s own share and influence in the same sphere. He also reckons a Microsoft buyout of Nokia is still plausible, and while we’re sure you’ve been reading Eldar’s missives with a hefty side of salt, it would make for an even more interesting 2012.

Eldar Murtazin gives RIM six months to win back customers, says Nokia is selling its soul to Microsoft originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 03 Jan 2012 12:52:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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With just 4% of mobile market, Apple owns 52% of profits

Friday, November 4th, 2011

Apple’s iPhone accounted for just 4.2% of the mobile handsets shipped in the third quarter of 2011, but the company still managed to rake in more than half of the industry’s profits. Among the eight top cell phone vendors in the world, Canaccord Genuity analyst Mike Walkley said Apple accounted for 52% of total operating income between them. The figure is down from 57% in the second quarter. Samsung accounted for 29% of profit among top vendors, up from 18% in the June quarter, and HTC accounted for 9% of total operating income. RIM’s value share slid to 7% from 11% in the prior quarter, and Nokia dipped three points to 4%. Read on for more.

“Apple generated a remarkable 52% value share of estimated Q3/C2011 handset industry operating profits among the top 8 OEMs,” Walkley wrote in a research note on Friday. “With only 4.2% global handset unit market share, it is remarkable Apple captures more than 50% of industry profits.”

Walkley also made it a point to highlight Samsung’s meteoric rise among smartphone vendors. “Demonstrating the importance of a strong smartphone offerings relative to industry profits, Samsung gained a remarkable 11 points of value share sequentially with its leading Android Galaxy S II product offering,” The analyst wrote. “RIM and Nokia lost a combined 7% value share due to its aging smartphone portfolios that are in transition.”

Canaccord now expects Apple to ship 29 million iPhone handset in the fourth quarter of 2011, up from the firm’s earlier estimate of 27 million. Walkley also increased his price target on Apple from $545 to $560 with a Buy rating.

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HTC Titan review

Thursday, October 27th, 2011

Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform is in a peculiar place right now. Those who use the year-old mobile operating system typically offer glowing accounts of their experiences, but adoption has been anything but brisk. Carriers aren’t pushing Windows Phones with any effort worth noting — in fact, retail staffers at U.S. carrier shops have been known to steer customers away from the platform according to various reports — and in the second quarter of 2011, Microsoft’s share of the mobile market may have hit an all-time low. Microsoft’s deal with Nokia finally bore fruit this week however, and the second wave of Windows Phones has begun trickling out into the market. Among the Windows Phone 7.5 “Mango” devices that have been announced to date, one in particular stands taller than the rest, both literally and figuratively. In this review, we take a look at the AT&T-bound HTC Titan to see if it’s worthy of its grandiose moniker.

The Inside

Ever since Microsoft first took the wraps off its next-generation mobile platform “Windows Phone Series 7″ in early 2010, I’ve been intrigued. Like webOS, Microsoft’s operating system appeared to offer a fresh take on the smartphone user experience. When handsets finally started shipping ahead of the holidays last year, Windows Phone delivered. It was fresh, it was unique and it was a pleasure to use. Unfortunately for Microsoft and its partners, however, consumers didn’t seem to care.

Windows Phone was truly a pleasure to use, but it was also quite clearly rushed. I can’t really blame Microsoft for rushing its new mobile platform out the door, of course, as Windows Mobile had effectively been dead for some time already. Android and iOS were crushing the market and Microsoft needed something to lure its vendor partners away from Android. And so Windows Phone 7 was born, but almost immediately dropped off at the orphanage. Vendors didn’t bother promoting the devices, carriers didn’t bother promoting the devices… even Microsoft fell oddly silent as its new platform was cast aside.

Enter Windows Phone 7.5, code-named “Mango” after a fruit so sweet when it’s ripe, it is almost impossible to resist. This was to be the company’s opportunity to regroup and deliver a series of blistering fastballs after a bases-loaded balk saw its opponents’ lead grow wider. All eyes were on London this week as Nokia unveiled its first two Windows Phones, but HTC’s Titan is already upon us, carrying Microsoft’s latest mobile OS on what is likely the largest display it will ever see.

The HTC Titan is a beast. Its 4.7-inch display gives Windows Phone a canvas that is nearly tablet-like, and the 1.5GHz Snapdragon processor driving the device makes one of the world’s smoothest operating system even smoother. In the two weeks I have been carrying the Titan, I have yet to see a crash, bogging, lag, or anything else of the sort. I can’t even say that about iOS.

Animations flutter about on the Titan, and native apps open into a usable state in the blink of an eye. The user interface is unbelievably smooth, and the UI “sticks” to one’s finger during navigation just as well as iOS. Scrolling in apps is also lag-free, though inertia scrolling is still a bit off. When the user releases a finger following a flick, the scroll seems to accelerate at the same rate regardless of how hard the user flicks. It’s awkward but hardly a major problem.

My biggest performance-related issue is the amount of time it takes most apps to refresh with new data. On AT&T’s HSPA network, data speeds are fast and latency is quite low. I regularly saw download speeds of between 2Mbps and 4Mbps during my tests in and around New York City, and upload speeds hovered between 1Mbps and 1.5Mbps while connected to HSPA. Even still, it can take 5, 6 or even 10 seconds or more for an app to refresh with even the smallest amount of new data. I haven’t quite pinpointed the culprit yet — different developers tell me different things, though everyone I’ve spoken with recognizes the issue — but I suspect that it’s often a combination of the OS and developers’ inexperience with coding apps for it.

Beyond that, I can’t stress enough how much I’m enjoying Mango. The “tombstoning” feature akin to application state-saving in iOS is implemented quite well, and apps that take advantage of it load from the background almost instantly. Enhanced multitasking features in the next major Windows Phone release will bring even more capabilities to developers and users alike, but the current solution is fast and elegant.

The Outside

The Titan is huge. There’s no reason to beat around the bush.

Supersized smartphones are becoming more popular each month — probably due in large part to the fact that vendors are flooding the market — and there are definitely advantages and disadvantages to carrying a phone this massive.

At 5.18-inches tall by 2.78-inches wide by 0.39-inches thick, the Titan is even bigger than the Samsung Galaxy S II. At 160 grams, it’s also more than 20 grams heavier. I like a heavy phone, and the Titan’s solid build and high-quality materials are more than worth the added heft to me. The majority of the smartphone’s case is comprised of beautiful brushed aluminum, save for a small rubber-feel area near the top of the rear case and a larger one at the bottom where the antenna sits.

Across the top of the phone sits a power/lock/unlock button, a small hole for the noise-canceling mic and a 3.5-millimeter audio jack. The right edge of the device is home to a slim two-stage camera button that sits beneath an equally slim volume rocker, and the left edge sports a lone micro-USB port. The bottom houses only the phone’s main microphone and a battery door release button.

On the rear of the device is a sizable camera lens flanked by a dual-LED flash and a speaker. I’ll discuss the camera more extensively a bit later. The face of the phone is made up almost entirely of smooth, oil-resistant glass. Three customary capacitive Windows Phones buttons sit across the bottom, and a front-facing camera is positioned near the top below the phone’s ear speaker. Voice calling is quite clear on the Titan, and the speaker gets loud enough to be used comfortably in noisy environments.

One thing that should not be overlooked about the exterior of the Titan is the design. Like the Sensation, HTC’s Titan features a unique unibody design that has the rear case of the device wrap around the side and top. The “guts” of the phone then sit inside the case, creating a design that positions all seams directly around the display. The result is not only gorgeous, it also means there are no uncomfortable seams to be felt by the user’s hands.

The Upside

As a complete package, the Titan is easily one of my favorite Windows Phone to date. The build is phenomenal and the Windows Phone 7.5 operating system is like greased lightning. I’m also a huge fan of live tiles.

Microsoft’s home screen UI, for those unfamiliar with Windows Phone, is tile-based. It is comprised of a grid of square and rectangular tiles that cascade endlessly. The result is a tidy home base that provides a welcome alternative to static icons. These tiles, if enabled, provide the user with information dynamically and can be updated frequently.

For example, my favorite simple weather app WeatherLive displays the current temperature, the temperature range for the day, and a graphical representation of the current weather conditions. When it rains, I see a storm cloud and rain drops. When it’s sunny, a big sharp sun covers the bulk of the tile. Another example is my favorite Google Reader-compatible RSS Reader, Wonder Reader. When enabled, the app periodically flashes headlines across the tile to let me know I have new articles waiting to be read. Messaging apps display unread counts, the Photo Hub cycles through images stored on the device, my Xbox Live avatar dances around the Games tile, and so on.

Beyond the tiles, there are a few other new features in Mango that I really enjoy. First and foremost, tombstoning and basic multitasking support are implemented quite well. Enabled apps close in a frozen state and holding down the back button for a second quickly brings up the task switcher UI. Transition animations are subtle but appreciated, and jumping between apps is lightning fast.

I also like that Mango brings Wi-Fi tethering to Windows Phones. The Internet Sharing service on the Titan is buried in the system settings in Windows Phone rather than being granted a dedicated app that I might be able to pin to the home screen, but I still appreciated having one less device to carry while testing the Titan. Wi-Fi tethering is available on a number of smartphones these days, but I typically find it unusable due to the inevitable battery drain. The Titan’s 1,600 mAh battery held up nicely even after about 30 minutes of Internet Sharing, however, and Mango includes a nifty feature: if no devices connect to the phone after a few minutes, tethering is automatically turned off. Also, if you’re tethered and then you disconnect all devices from the phone, Internet Sharing will automatically turn off after a few idle minutes. It’s one less thing to worry about.

The camera on the Titan shocked me. This has traditionally been a very weak point for HTC phones — very, very weak — but the 8-megapixel camera on the Titan captures terrific still images. The color and clarity in photos taken by the Titan is on par with the likes of Zeiss-equipped Nokia handsets and the iPhone 4S, and future Titan owners can certainly plan to ditch their point-and-shoot cameras. It also captures high-quality 720p HD video content, though the lack of an HDMI-out port or even an adapter is something of a disappointment.

Finally, Windows Phone still provides what, in my opinion, is the hands-down best email experience on any mobile platform. The UI in the email app is gorgeous and lightning fast, and it’s simple to drill down to unread items, urgent items or flagged items with a quick flick. On the Titan, the humongous display only makes things better. Productivity is the same story. Microsoft’s mobile Office suite is a joy to use for creating and editing Word documents or Excel spreadsheets, and the SkyDrive integration provides easy access to remote files to ensure that the same documents are available on your phone and your computer.

The Downside

Again, the Titan is huge. While I have gotten somewhat used to the mammoth device over the course of the the past two weeks, it’s just still too big for me.

Consumers love giant smartphones. Vendors keep cranking them out and people keep buying them. While there are numerous and obvious advantages to big smartphone displays, there are also several drawbacks and the negative outweighs the positive for me.

On the one hand, the huge screen affords a great canvas for emails, web pages, images and video. On the other hand, stretching 480 x 800-pixel resolution over a panel that measures 4.7-inches diagonally means clarity and sharpness suffer. Usability suffers as well, and a perfect example is the back button. On Windows Phone devices, the back button is extremely important. There is often no way to navigate back one screen from within the UI, and holding down the capacitive back key also brings up the application switcher. While holding the device in my right hand, however, I cannot reach the back button at all. Not even close.

I also can’t reach the lock/unlock button without repositioning the device in my hand, though this is infinitely less important than the back key. This button is crucial to the operation of the device, and one-handed use is often my preferred method of operation. It just doesn’t work. Samsung solved the problem by repositioning the back button on its giant Galaxy S II smartphone to make it accessible during one-handed use. This of course left the menu key just out of reach, but better that than the back button.

Somewhere around 4-inches lies the sweet spot for me, and a scaled down device like the Titan with a display around that size would likely be my ideal Windows Phone.

My only other serious complaint about the Titan applies to Windows Phone in general rather than to this particular smartphone, and that is the third-party app situation. It’s improving every day, and Nokia’s arrival on the scene will only help accelerate developer adoption. Today, however, things are not where they need to be.

I cannot for the life of me find a decent Twitter app, for example. There are a handful of usable options — I’ve landed on Seesmic for the time being — but they’re all slow and clunky. This goes back to my earlier note that data calls take entirely too long. Microsoft needs to fix this problem because it can be quite off-putting, especially in areas with sparse cellular coverage. The Metro interface is beautiful, but it loses its allure quickly when a data refresh takes 10 seconds.

Today, Windows Phone is often an afterthought for developers and the selection in the Windows Marketplace reflects that. This will change, and Mango introduced new APIs and capabilities that afford developers more flexibility. Right now however, there are many go-to apps that I simply can’t find in the Marketplace, and I suspect many users coming from more established platforms will make the same claim.

The Bottom Line

HTC’s Titan is a smartphone worthy of its name. More importantly, it is also worthy of consumers’ consideration because it really is a fantastic device. The hardware and build are class-leading, the display is bright and clear, the 8-megapixel camera captures gorgeous images, and the Windows Phone 7.5 operating system is a breath of fresh air.

Size matters. For me, bigger isn’t always better and the Titan’s towering stature is a turn off. Many smartphone buyers enjoy large handsets however, and if you fall into that category I sincerely doubt you’ll be able to find a better Windows Phone anywhere in the world right now.

AT&T will launch the HTC Titan some time this fall.

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Android usage poised to pass Symbian in Nokia’s backyard; iOS already No. 1

Monday, October 24th, 2011

Usage of Android-based devices has exploded in Nordic countries over the past few months and is set to push Symbian into the No. 3 spot among mobile platforms in the region. Apple’s iPhone managed to knock Symbian out of the top spot some time ago, and according to data from mobile analytics firm CEM4Mobile Solutions, Android usage has grown 6.2% in the region since May while Symbian usage slid 1.7%. Based on the firm’s monitoring of usage in the region, iOS held a 33% share in September while Symbian sat at 29% and Android followed closely behind with 28%. In August, Android briefly surpassed Symbian before usage of the latter gained two points last month. CEM4Mobile Solutions says Android usage across the Nordic region will overtake Symbian in October, and iOS will be the next to fall by the end of December despite the launch of Apple’s next-generation iPhone 4S in multiple Nordic countries later this month. The firm’s full press release follows below.

CEM4Mobile: Android on Track to Take the Pole Position

ESPOO, Finland, October 24, 2011/PRNewswire/ –

New Research and a Forecast: iOS Leading, Android and Symbian Head to Head

Over the past several years Finland’s and the world’s leading supplier of Mobile Analytics and Customer Experience Management (CEM) for mobile content and value-added services, CEM4Mobile Solutions, has been monitoring the different trends in the mobile market. The past year has shown extremely strong growth for the market share of Android OS based devices when analyzed from usage of mobile services. Prior to the forthcoming significant product launches from Nokia, Microsoft, Apple, Samsung, Google and others, it was time to revisit and update our research on mobile platform market shares.

The previous research was carried out earlier this year. The research included data from week 4 / 2010 to week 5 / 2011 by using a sample based on 97 million mobile transaction page loads from Nordic mobile services. The research analyzed actual mobile traffic collected by CEM4Mobile analytics. The survey was done and published because reliable market data is essential for companies developing and distributing mobile services. Further to this, the insight shed light on how different mobile platforms encourage people to use mobile services.

Back in February, we predicted that Android will become the market leader in the Nordic countries. We also forecasted Android to overtake Symbian in August 2011, and it did for couple of weeks, but Nokia has managed to resist the decline in its market shares with new handset releases and improved versions of Symbian. Nevertheless, iOS has managed to obtain the lead position particularly due to the platform’s high popularity in Denmark and Sweden leaving Android and Symbian at even market shares in September. However, all operating systems are in the same ballpark having 28-33% of the market share.

Through all of the competition, Android has shown in the last five months a strong average market share change increase of 6.16% per month. This combined with Apple iOS’s slight drop of -1.46% and Symbian’s drop of -1.70% per month suggest that it won’t be too long before Android climbs to the top position.

The changes in operating system market shares

This update was based on 21 million transaction sample of mobile browsing services page loads from May to September 2011 from Nordic countries. The research revealed that the operating system market shares have evolved during the last months as follows:

   Platform       May   June  July  August September  Avg. % Change

   Apple iOS      35 %  35 %  32 %   34 %    33 %       -1.46 %
   Symbian OS     31 %  30 %  29 %   27 %    29 %       -1.70 %
   Android        22 %  24 %  26 %   28 %    28 %        6.16 %
   Nokia OS        5 %   5 %   5 %    5 %     5 %       -0.77 %
   SonyEricsson    3 %   3 %   3 %    3 %     2 %       -5.47 %
   Samsung OS      2 %   1 %   2 %    1 %     1 %       -2.49 %

Table 1. Mobile Operating System Market Shares from Scandinavian Mobile Browsing Services (Source: CEM4Moible Solutions Ltd. 2011)

The results are showing all platforms are continuing to lose market share to Android which is showing steady strong growth on mobile services. Despite the trend, Apple iOS still had a 4% lead on the other platforms as of September. The graph attached and the article in our blog at http://www.cem4mobile.com/blog/ depicts the same values visually over the 5 month period.

“It remains to be seen how much the unfortunate recent loss of Apple’s founder Steve Jobs will impact Apple’s performance, how much the recent patent disputes will slow down the adoption of Android and at which point Nokia’s and Microsoft’s effort on Windows Phone 7 start impacting the trends”, comments Janne Aalto, the CEO of CEM4Mobile Solutions Ltd.

Forecast: Android to overtake Symbian in October and Apple iOS in December 2011

A forecast was made based on the trend in page loads over the past 5 months from May to August 2011. The average percentage changes for this period were as follows:

    Operating system    Change
    Android OS           +6.16%
    Symbian OS           -1.70%
    Apple iOS            -1.46%
    Nokia OS             -0.77%
    SonyEricsson OS      -5.47%
    Samsung OS           -2.49%

If this trend continues unchanged, Android looks set to overtake Symbian again in October 2011 and Apple iOS by the end of December 2011. Without any major movements in the OS market, Android will continue to grow towards our forecast of nearly 38% of the market by the end of Q1 / 2012.

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41% of mobile users in North America plan to buy iPhone 5, study suggests

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011

According to research recently released by mobile ad network InMobi, 41% of mobile users in North America plan to purchase the iPhone 5. 50% of those planning to purchase the phone will buy it within the first six months after it is launched, which could propel its current 27% smartphone market share to 41%. InMobi added one caveat: if Apple decides to release a minor upgrade to the current iPhone, just 15% of consumers will purchase the new device. InMobi’s research revealed that consumers hope Apple upgrades the processing speed, screen resolution, battery life and service quality in the new device. 51% of current iPhone owners, 27% of BlackBerry owners and 52% of Android owners plan to upgrade to the iPhone 5. If Apple reveals an iPhone 4S, however, just 11% of iPhone and BlackBerry users and 28% of Android users plan to make the purchase. “Apple is currently the clear leader in terms of compelling user experience and customer loyalty, and we feel that their quality and pace of innovation when it comes to mobile devices will continue to improve the content and advertising experience for consumers for iPhone 5 and beyond,” InMobi vice president of global research and marketing James Lamberti said. Read on for the full press release.

InMobi Smartphone Study Reveals 41% of Mobile Users to Buy Apple iPhone 5

North American Mobile Ad Market to Benefit from Most Highly-Anticipated Smartphone Launch to Date

SAN MATEO, Calif., Sept. 28, 2011 — SAN MATEO, Calif., Sept. 28, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — InMobi, the world’s largest independent mobile ad network, today announces the combined results of its monthly InMobi Mobile Insights network ad data research and a custom iPhone-focused study, iPhone 5 and the Mobile Market.  The InMobi announcement acts as a forecast to the scope and effect of the confirmed October 4th Apple iPhone announcement in North America.  InMobi anticipates the North American mobile ad market to experience a significant increase in mobile media consumption based on the iPhone 5 consumer data findings.

Apple iPhone 5 potentially the most successful smartphone launch to date

The recent InMobi consumer smartphone survey uncovers that 41% of current mobile users in the U.S., Mexico, and Canada plan to buy an iPhone 5—potentially making it the most successful launch from the consumer electronics giant to date.  The study further finds that over 50% of those users will make the purchase within the first six months of the iPhone 5 launch, which could take Apple significantly ahead of its June 2011 market position, and increase its mobile platform market share from 27% in June (comScore Inc., August 2011) to 41%.

However, if Apple only unveils a product update—akin to the 3GS version of the iPhone that Apple released in 2009—interest in the new smartphone will be significantly lower, with fewer than 15% of consumers likely to actively pursue the new handset.

The study finds that consumers are most hopeful for improved battery life; increased processing speed; higher-quality screen resolution; and stronger phone service in the rumored Apple smartphone.

Customer retention and new users

The study uncovered that over half of BlackBerry users (52%) are planning to switch to the new Apple iPhone 5, followed by 51% of current iPhone users and over one in four (27%) Android owners.  Even if the announcement only unveils an iPhone 4S, 28% of current BlackBerry smartphone owners plan to switch to Apple, more than double the amount of current iPhone and Android owners.

Percentage of mobile consumers planning to switch to new iPhone:
Current Phone % Planning to Switch to iPhone 5 % Planning to Switch to iPhone “4S”
iPhone 51 11
Android 27 11
BlackBerry 52 28

InMobi experiences continued network growth in North America

InMobi’s North America Market Overview, which shows nearly 24 billion mobile ad impressions on the InMobi network over the past quarter, denotes that Apple mobile ad impressions are on the rise in iPod Touch devices and that as a manufacturer, Apple has the majority of the market share, at 29%.  Data from the report also indicates a 33% growth in mobile ad impressions over the past three months, and a 39% growth in smart phone impressions in the North America mobile market.  An infographic outlining the full findings of InMobi’s most recent research is available at: http://www.inmobi.com/research/.

Commenting on InMobi’s latest findings, James Lamberti, VP Global Research & Marketing at InMobi, said: “The combination of Apple’s increasing market share in mobile advertising and general consumer interest in their latest technology is another boon for the mobile advertising industry.  Apple is currently the clear leader in terms of compelling user experience and customer loyalty, and we feel that their quality and pace of innovation when it comes to mobile devices will continue to improve the content and advertising experience for consumers for iPhone 5 and beyond.”

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Skype adds Groupme to social portfolio, sets sights on mobile market

Sunday, August 21st, 2011

Skype adds Groupme to social portfolio, sets sights on mobile marketSure, we’re still waiting for that Microsoft-Skype deal to close, but it looks like Redmond’s about to get more than it initially bargained for. Skype announced today that it has reached an agreement to snatch up Groupme, the mobile group messaging service that made a splash at Google I/O. Outfit head honcho Tony Bates told TechCrunch that Skype needs to invade the mobile space if it hopes to reach its goal of scoring one billion users, and cites Groupme’s “sticky group messaging experience” as the ideal mobile addition to the Skype family. But don’t take our word for it, hit the break and dig the PR for yourself.

Continue reading Skype adds Groupme to social portfolio, sets sights on mobile market

Skype adds Groupme to social portfolio, sets sights on mobile market originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 22 Aug 2011 01:58:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Most popular this week

Sunday, July 17th, 2011

July 11th – 17th

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Millennial: Android maintains lead in May, Windows Phone usage nearly doubled

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011

Mobile advertising firm Millenial Media on Wednesday published its Mobile Mix report for the month of May, highlighting several interesting developments in the mobile market. Using ad impressions served to each operating system as a barometer for share, Millennial can give us a good assessment of the current smartphone and connected device markets. Android was flat compared to April maintaining its 53% share of Millennial impressions, and Apple’s iOS lost one percentage point in May as it slid to 27%. The iPhone still held an overwhelming lead as the most popular single device for the 20th consecutive month, however. Apple is also Millennial’s top-ranked manufacturer, with 30.84% of all ad impressions served to iOS devices. Samsung found itself in the No. 2 spot in May with 13.59%, followed closely by RIM at 13.30%. HTC and Motorola rounded out the top-5 with 10.98% and 9.47%, respectively. While Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform is still barely a blip on the radar, impressions to the OS did nearly double month-over-month, growing 92% compared to April. Apple’s iPad was the most popular “connected device” in May, growing 29% month-over-month. Hit the break for some more key data from May’s Mobile Mix report.

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Microsoft shutting down Windows Mobile market, My Phone service

Friday, June 10th, 2011

While Microsoft was one of the last to launch an app store on Windows Mobile 6, the company will be the first to shut one down as well. Microsoft has alerted Windows Mobile 6 customers that the company plans to shut down the entire service, including the ability for new developers to submit new applications on July 15th. Though customers will still be able to purchase and redownload apps, we’re guessing that’s coming to a close pretty soon as well. Additionally, Microsoft’s My Phone service — the software and service that backs up data on your phone including multimedia — will be going offline as well on August 7th. The goods news is that there’s Windows Phone, and this is a logical step towards shifting consumers over to the new ecosystem.

Thanks, Joshua!

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Sony Ericsson sues Clearwire for trademark infringement

Monday, January 17th, 2011

Quick, can you tell these two swirling orbs apart? That’s Sony Ericsson’s logo on the left, and Clearwire’s on the right — and SE thinks they’re confusingly similar enough to have filed a federal trademark lawsuit in Virginia. The situation is pretty basic: Sony Ericsson holds trademark registrations on the various iterations of its sphere logos, and the company thinks Clearwire is confusing the mobile market with its version — and it definitely doesn’t want Clearwire to stamp the logo on phones, which Clearwire is eventually planning to do, money problems or no. SE’s asked the court to forbid Clearwire from using the logo and for a host of monetary damages, which seems like a big risk for a company that’s having cashflow problems to begin with — we’ll see what happens.

[Thanks, Alex]

Sony Ericsson sues Clearwire for trademark infringement originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 17 Jan 2011 18:53:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Modu, world’s lightest cellphone, lands in UK

Wednesday, July 14th, 2010

Another day, another… oh wait, what’s this? The Modu phone has been an enigmatic figure in the mobile world, treading the precipice of vaporware for a while before finally launching in its home market of Israel last year and in a few more places around the world since then. Aiming to shake up the apparently stale mobile market, this minimalist take on the phone is no larger than the standard battery in your modern smartphone and gets its name from the modular “jackets” it can slip into. They furnish it with added functionality and buttons, while also sprinkling a bit of extra style on top as well. Slide past the break to learn more about this handset, the Modu 1, together with a few teasers about the upcoming touchscreen-based Modu 2.

Gallery: Modu hands-on

Continue reading Modu, world’s lightest cellphone, lands in UK

Modu, world’s lightest cellphone, lands in UK originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 14 Jul 2010 04:24:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Chrome grabs #3 spot in U.S. browser usage, ousts Safari

Monday, June 28th, 2010

chrome_logo

For the first time since the browsers inception, Google’s Chrome has overtaken Apple’s Safari in percentage of U.S. market share. Web analytics company StatCounter grabbed Chrome had 8.97% of U.S. market share while Safari had 8.88% for the week beginning on June 21st. For sometime now, Chrome (~ 9%) has bested Safari (~ 4%) globally, however — as we’re sure Google will tell you — it is nice to win on your home turf. We’ve got the full press release queued up for you after the break.  


Chrome Overtakes Safari for First Time to Claim Third Place in US Internet Browser Market – StatCounter

- Market still led by Internet Explorer

BOSTON & DUBLIN–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Google’s internet browser Chrome has overtaken Apple’s Safari in the US for the first time on a weekly basis according to StatCounter, the company which provides free website analytics. The firm’s research arm StatCounter Global Stats reports that for the week beginning 21 June Chrome overtook Safari to claim third place in the US browser market.

“This is quite a coup for Google as they have gone from zero to almost 10% of the US market in under two years,” commented Aodhan Cullen, CEO, StatCounter. “There is a battle royal going on between Google and Apple in the internet browser space (Chrome v Safari) as well as in the mobile market (Android v iPhone).” Chrome with 8.97% took third place in the US browser market ahead of Safari with 8.88%. Microsoft’s Internet Explorer still dominates the US Internet browser market with 52%, followed by Firefox (28.5%).

Globally Chrome has been well ahead of Safari for some time with 9.4% of the market compared to 4% for Safari. Microsoft’s Internet Explorer has 53% of the global market followed by Firefox on 31%. The data is based on an analysis of 3.6 billion page views (874 million from the US) for the week 21 to 27 June 2010 collected from the StatCounter network of over three million websites.

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Entelligence: App stores are not enough

Sunday, June 27th, 2010
Entelligence is a column by technology strategist and author Michael Gartenberg, a man whose desire for a delicious cup of coffee and a quality New York bagel is dwarfed only by his passion for tech. In these articles, he’ll explore where our industry is and where it’s going — on both micro and macro levels — with the unique wit and insight only he can provide.

A little over two years ago, Apple changed the face of mobile computing when it launched the App Store and broke down the barriers between app developers and end users. There was no longer a need for users to go to a third-party web site, hand over a credit card, download an app to their computer, and sync it to their device. The App Store’s integration with iTunes made it easy for the consumer to purchase apps, and purchase apps they did. But while Apple now commands a major lead in the sheer number of apps for the iOS platform, it’s far from game over in the mobile market, and other competitors can catch up. But it’s going to take more than just an app store for other platforms to level the playing field — that’s just the table stakes now. Here’s what mobile platform providers need to compete effectively.

First, the devices must stand on their own. Before Apple introduced the iPhone OS SDK, the developer program and the App Store, the company sold more than a million iPhones and iPod touches. That is, it had captured a large enough market for developers to notice before third-party apps were brought into the equation. Handset vendors and platform providers must have devices that are compelling to consumers out of the box, with features and form factors that attract buyers independently. Seeding a market with quality devices is one way to capture the attention of developers who will all want to be part of a platform with room to grow.

Continue reading Entelligence: App stores are not enough

Entelligence: App stores are not enough originally appeared on Engadget on Sun, 27 Jun 2010 20:00:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Apple confirms it signed a 5-year iPhone exclusivity deal with AT&T

Monday, May 10th, 2010

iPhone_3GS

Three years. That’s how long it took for the world to get confirmation that the iPhone exclusivity deal Apple signed with AT&T back in 2007 was good for 5-years. Here’s how the info came about. Back in 2008, Apple’s legal team was in a courtroom in San Jose fending off a lawsuit which alleged that it was benefiting from an illegal monopoly over the iPhone, saying that AT&T’s 5-year exclusivity would really require iPhone owners to re-sign with AT&T for an additional 3-years after their initial 2-year contract had expired. This, in part, was Apple’s response:

[...] there was widespread disclosure of [AT&T's] five-year exclusivity and no suggestion by Apple or anyone else that iPhones would become unlocked after two years. In fact, the iPhone box itself disclosed to the prospective purchaser that a “[s]ervice plan with AT&T [would be] required for cellular network capabilities on expiration of initial new two-year agreement.” This at-purchase information was more than enough disclosure to put consumers on notice that they might never have a choice of cellular service for their iPhone, and to thus preclude a Kodak-type aftermarket.

Moreover, it is sheer speculation –- and illogical -– that failing to disclose the five-year exclusivity term would produce monopoly power, i.e., would allow Apple, a brand new entrant in cell phones, to “exert raw power in the aftermarket without regard for commercial consequences in the foremarket.”

The only question now is whether or not the contract is still valid. As Engadget’s Nilay Patel points out, “Contracts can be canceled, amended, and breached in many ways, and AT&T’s spotty recent service history plus the explosion of the iPhone and the mobile market in general have given Apple any number of reasons to revisit the deal. In addition, the two companies obviously hit the negotiating table again to hammer out the iPad’s pricing plans, and there’s no way of knowing whether that deal involves the iPhone as well. But it’s nice to finally know for certain that AT&T’s initial iPhone exclusivity period was booked until 2012 — now we just have to see if all this recent chatter means something’s changed.”

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