Smartphones based on Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s iOS have lost some of their market share to their Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG)’s Android counterpart, and Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows based phone performed well in the first quarter, to overtake BlackBerry for third place.
As per the latest data released by IDC on Thursday for the first quarter of 2013, Apple’s iOS based devices accounted for 17.3 percent of smartphones shipped in the quarter compared to 23 percent a year ago. Despite a fall in market share, the first quarter was Apple’s strongest ever in terms of shipment volumes as the iPhone maker had already revealed that last month it shipped a record 37.4 million iPhones.
Google’s Android platform, which is available on numerous devices unlike Apple’s iOS, has seen an impressive performance in the first quarter. Shipments of the Android based devices accounted for 75 percent of the market share up from 59.1 percent in the first quarter of 2012. As per IDC, number of Android based devices shipped during the quarter amounted to 162.1 million.
The data from IDC validates earlier announcement made at the annual I/O developer’s conference on Wednesday by Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) that activations of the Android based devices have crossed the 900 million milestone. In 2011, the figure stood at 100 million while, in 2012, it was 400 million.
Nokia & RIM, Battling For Third Place
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) together accounted for over 92 percent of the smartphone shipments in the first quarter, with less than 8 percent left for the remaining companies to fight for. Devices based on Microsoft’s Windows bagged the third spot earlier claimed by BlackBerry. Windows based devices accounted for 3.2 percent of the shipments compared t 2 percent last year.
Volume wise, shipments of the Windows based devices increased from 3 million last year to 7 million for the first quarter this year. This is the best performance by the Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)’s Windows Phone platform ever.
The shipments of the Canadian smartphone maker were down from 6.4 percent a year ago to 2.9 percent. During the quarter, the company was able to ship only 6.3 million BlackBerry devices.
However, the data for the second quarter will be all the more important for BlackBerry as it will take into account the company’s new BlackBerry 10 platform. In the platform’s first quarter of availability, the company was able to ship more than a million BlackBerry 10 devices.
According to Ramon Llamas, research manager with IDC’s Mobile Phone team, there is a constant shift in the worldwide smartphone market. Though Android and Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s iOS accounted for over 90 percent of the shipments, but a closer analysis “reveals turnaround and demand for alternatives.”