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Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Summer smartphone sales give the European mobile market a welcome boost

The mobile phone market in Western Europe grew just 1.5% year-on-year to 43.3 million units in the second quarter of 2010, with smartphone growth offsetting a fall in the sale of traditional handsets. International Data Corporation's Mobile Phone Tracker says smartphone shipments were up 60% on Q2 2009 to 14.6 million units, while traditional phone sales fell 14% to 28.7 million units. That means 34% of all devices shipped were smartphones, up from 28% in the previous quarter.

According to IDC, Android shipments increased 450% year-on-year and its market share jumped from 4% to 15% in the last 12 months, becoming the fourth most-popular operating system among new smartphones. IDC believes Android will become the second most-popular smartphone OS in Western Europe by as early as the first quarter of 2011.

There's a similarly positive note from comScore, which has been looking at total subscribers in five European countries rather than shipments to all of Western Europe (and over a slightly different time period, too). It says the European smartphone market has grown 41% in the past year to 60.8 million subscribers. Smartphone usage is dominated by the Symbian platform, which appears on 54.4% of smartphones in Western Europe.

comScore calculates that Android's total market share in the five countries it surveyed (UK, France, Germany, Spain and Italy) has risen from 0.5% in July 2009 to 6.1% in 2010, while Apple's share has risen from 10.2% to 19.2%.

IDC market share graph

comScore market share graph

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Opinion Articles

Dubious surveys don't help anyone

Mark Bridge writes:

Last week in one of my opinion pieces I had a bit of a go at a mobile phone price comparison website. I'd only just forgiven them when I saw another survey from another mobile phone price comparison website. This one said shopping for a mobile phone at a price comparison website could be up to 40% cheaper than visiting the high street. And then I took a closer look...

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Termination rates are already falling - so why all the fuss?

Mark Bridge writes:

With over 100,000 people having signed its petition in four months, there’s no denying that the Terminate The Rate campaign is attracting supporters. And with promises including “BT and 3 are working together on a petition that will lower your phone bill by reducing the level of Mobile Termination Rates”, it’s easy to see why.

But what’s the point of all the campaigning - and has it really achieved anything?  Terminate The Rate says mobile networks charge a Mobile Termination Rate of around 4.7p per minute for connecting a call to another network. That’s a lot of money over the course of a year. But those networks also pay that 4.7p when calls are connected to them, which cancels out a fair bit of it.

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From Vizzavi to Vodafone 360

Mark Bridge writes:

Earlier this week Vodafone announced Vodafone 360 under the headline “Bringing your world together”. It all sounds very promising – and it reminded me of another Vodafone launch nine years before. It was September 2000 when Vizzavi appeared in the UK...

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And our survey said...

Mark Bridge writes:

The coolest person in the country admires the French president's wife and lives in East London. Oh, and they use a BlackBerry by day but an iPhone by night. That's what recent surveys say. Nonsense, isn’t it?

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The mobile phone tries to grow up

Mark Bridge writes:

The end of civilisation. The dawn of the future. Mobile phones are somewhere in the middle. Once seen as novelties for people with too much money, the mobile phone is now ubiquitous. And with that ubiquity comes an acceptance that they’re just tools. Doesn't it?

Which is why I was surprised to see a news article from Voice, a trade union that wants mobile phones banned from nurseries because of concern about inappropriate photographs.

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Recent Podcasts

Reviewing our 2015 mobile industry predictions... and looking forward to 2016

Podcast - 15th January 2016

Iain Graham, James Rosewell and Mark Bridge return to review their mobile industry predictions from last year. Which mergers, partnerships and developments did they forecast correctly... and which didn’t work out as planned?

Later in the programme, the team anticipates some of the topics that will be hitting the headlines during 2016.

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Podcast from Mobile World Congress 2015

Podcast - 6th March 2015

Mark Bridge learns about the mobile technology trends at Mobile World Congress 2015 by chatting to James Rosewell of 51Degrees, Dr Kevin Curran from the IEEE and Chris Millington of Doro.

They talk about wearable devices, wireless charging, mobile operating systems and much more... including some of their favourite products from the exhibition.

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Looking back at February: from security scares to multiple MVNOs

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We're taking a look back at the biggest mobile industry news stories from February 2015, including allegations that the UK's security service tried to breach SIM card security by hacking into one of the world's biggest SIM producers.

We also talk about the planned BT and EE merger, the creation of two new UK virtual networks, some acquisitions in the mobile payment arena and a new Ubuntu smartphone.

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Interview with Chris Millington of Doro about mobile retailing, wearables and technology for older consumers

Podcast - 24th February 2015

In today's programme Mark Bridge talks to Chris Millington, who's Managing Director for Doro UK and Ireland.

They discuss the state of mobile retailing in the UK, the future of wearable devices and - as you might expect - smartphones for seniors.

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A month of mobile: O2 counts on 3, Microsoft counts to 10 and Apple counts its profits

Podcast - 30th January 2015

We're back with a month of mobile industry news, including takeover talks and takeover rumours. O2 and Three are said to be discussing a merger... but is there any truth in the suggestions that BlackBerry could be up for grabs?

We also discuss Apple's record-breaking quarterly figures, the highlights of CES and the launch of Microsoft Windows 10, as well as saying farewell to the current version of Google Glass.

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