Nokia’s push to replace its Symbian-powered smartphone lineup with handsets running Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform appears to be having the desired effect for the company in the UK, with its sales of Windows Phone devices helping to outpace Symbian devices.
A new report from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech compared sales of Symbian and Windows Phone smartphones across Europe, showing that Nokia’s Lumia 800 accounted for 87% of Windows Phone sales, helping to increase Microsoft’s smartphone market share from 0.5% last year to 2.5% in 2012. Symbian’s share took a nosedive from 12.4% in 2011 to 2.4% in 2012.
Microsoft’s share of the market still lags heavily behind Apple and Android in the UK, with Apple increasing its share from 22.7% a year ago to 28.7% and Android growing its share to 48.5% from 37.8% last year.
Dominic Sunnebo, global consumer insight director at Kantar, noted Nokia’s recent rise:
“There are strong signs that WP7 Nokia handsets are starting to make an impact on the European smartphone market though US sales, where the Nokia brand is weaker, remain underwhelming. The fact that WP7 sales have overtaken Symbian based on one handset is encouraging; however, Nokia will need to expand the range quickly in order to keep up with the slew of next generation competitor products being launched in quarter two.”
Overall, smartphones made up 73.2% of sales over the 12 weeks ending 19 February, 2012, ensuring that 51.3% of Britons now a smartphone.
Nokia recently noted in its 2011 annual report that to maximise its Symbian business, it expects to focus on shipments in specific regions, through to 2016. The company believes that as market conditions change and it continues to increase its focus on Windows Phone devices, it will sell fewer Symbian devices than it had previously predicted.
The report also identified that consumers are more satisfied with the handsets that they purchase. The average smartphone satisfaction score ranked at 7.9 (out of 10), with Apple iPhone owners the happiest with their devices with a score of 8.8. Samsung came in second with 8.0 and HTC in third with 7.6.
The study shows results similar to a J.D. Power report in the US, whose rankings showed that Apple scored 839 points from a 1,000-point scale, with HTC obtaining a rating of 798 points and Samsung following with 769 (although this was lower than the industry average of 774).