Apple saw its smartphone market share spike in October – the first full month of sales for the new iPhone 5C and 5S models – but the uplift was not as impressive as the one sparked by the iPhone 5’s release a year ago.
This is one of the key findings from the latest smartphone sales data compiled by Kantar Worldpanel ComTech for the three months to October 2013.
Dominic Sunnebo, strategic insight director at Kantar, said that in almost all markets the iPhone 5S and 5C releases gave iOS a “significant bounce” compared with the previous month.
He added, however, that Apple’s share of the smartphone market still remains smaller than when the iPhone 5 was released, although this should not be entirely unexpected.
“Shoppers tend to react more positively to ‘full’ releases than incremental improvements, such as the 5S and 5C,” said the Kantar analyst.
According to Kantar’s figures, Apple’s iOS market share across Europe’s big five markets (Britain, Germany, France, Italy and Spain) in the three months to October was 15.8 per cent, down from 20.8 per cent during the same period in 2012.
Android, meanwhile, enjoyed an “EU5” market share increase, going from 64.5 per cent to 70.9 per cent.
There was a similar story in the US. While Android’s market share increased – going from 47.7 per cent to 52.6 per cent – Apple’s iOS headed in the other direction (down from 47.2 per cent to 40.8 per cent).
Even so, the October spikes – in some cases – were impressive.
Helped by NTT Docomo distributing iPhones for the first time, Apple’s share hit 76.1 per cent during October.
In the US, Apple’s October share reached 52.8 per cent.
“The cheaper 5C appeals to a broader audience than Apple usually attracts,” added Sunnebo. “In the US, the biggest demand for these mid-end models is coming from lower income households.”
And the good news for Apple is that this wider appeal is attracting significant switching from competitors.
“Almost half of iPhone 5C owners switched from competitor brands, particularly Samsung and LG, compared with 80 per cent of 5S owners who upgraded from a previous iPhone model,” said the Kantar analyst.
Windows’ progress was also noticeable. Its EU5 share now exceeds 10 per cent (under five per cent a year ago) and is close to 5 per cent in the US (up from 2.5 per cent).