Windows Phone growth takes a hit, accounts for fewer new devices

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Windows Phone sure has a long way to go before it’s enjoying the same sort of popularity seen by either iOS or Android, but it’s felt like the platform has been slowly building up its base. In some markets, like Vietnam, it’s already a real contender, while it continues to struggle to pick up users in others. But on the whole, it’s looked like we’ve been seeing slow growth. Slow, yes, but still growth. However, a new report casts doubt on that progress, showing a decline not just in the number of shipments of new Windows Phone devices, but in the share those shipments make of the overall market.

Looking at Q2 2014 compared to the same to the same timeframe in 2013, worldwide smartphone shipments are up, as is activity for both Android and iOS models. But with Windows Phone, volume appears to have dropped from 8.2 million units in Q2 2013 to just 7.4 million in Q2 2014. That also represents a drop from 3.4 percent of all shipments, to only 2.5 percent.

Before we start panicking, it’s important to look at what these numbers represent, and we’re only talking about new shipments, not the total number of Windows Phone devices currently in use. And with the arrival of Windows Phone 8.1, it might be expected that a lot of users are holding on to older handsets, looking forward to getting their updates, rather than going out and buying new hardware. That said, this is hardly good news, either.

Will attractive new hardware like that Windows Phone-running HTC One M8 we’re expecting be able to reverse this trend? We’ll be curious to see how these numbers play out as data starts arriving for Q3 and even Q4 sales.

Top Five Smartphone Operating Systems, Worldwide Shipments, and Market Share, 2014Q2 (Units in Millions)

Operating System

2Q14 Shipment Volume

2Q14 Market Share

2Q13 Shipment Volume

2Q13 Market Share

2Q14/2Q13 Growth

Android

255.3

84.7%

191.5

79.6%

33.3%

iOS

35.2

11.7%

31.2

13.0%

12.7%

Windows Phone

7.4

2.5%

8.2

3.4%

-9.4%

BlackBerry

1.5

0.5%

6.7

2.8%

-78.0%

Others

1.9

0.6%

2.9

1.2%

-32.2%

Total

301.3

100%

240.5

100%

25.3%

Source: IDC
Via: WPCentral

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About The Author
Stephen Schenck
Stephen has been writing about electronics since 2008, which only serves to frustrate him that he waited so long to combine his love of gadgets and his degree in writing. In his spare time, he collects console and arcade game hardware, is a motorcycle enthusiast, and enjoys trapping blue crabs. Stephen's first mobile device was a 624 MHz Dell Axim X30, which he's convinced is still a viable platform. Stephen longs for a market where phones are sold independently of service, and bandwidth is cheap and plentiful; he's not holding his breath. In the meantime, he devours smartphone news and tries to sort out the juicy bitsRead more about Stephen Schenck!