Data from market research firm Kantar WorldPanel showed Wednesday that Apple Inc. was on course to a “record quarter” thanks to strong sales of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. Kantar said that the big-screen iPhones helped iOS gain market share versus Android in almost every major market, in the three months ending Oct.31. However, Android still leads the pack by a distant margin.
iPhone 6 boosts Apple’s market share in Europe
Among Android vendors, Samsung is on the top in most markets. But Xiaomi has emerged as the strongest smartphone company in China with 30% market share. In the U.S. market, LG has started eating into Samsung’s market share, said Kantar. The research firm said that Android accounted for 70% smartphone sales in the “big five” markets of Europe (Britain, Germany, France, Italy, Spain), down 2.6% from last year.
Apple’s share in the “big five” European markets increased by six percentage points from to 20.7%. In the UK, the iPhones have captured 39.5% share, up from 29.1% in the same period last year. Kantar’s strategic insight director Dominic Sunnebo attributed the Cupertino’s success to brand loyalty, along with attracting Android switchers. He said about 86% of British buyers upgraded from an older iPhone to the iPhone 6, and 5% switched from Samsung.
Apple’s share in the U.S. rises modestly
In the U.S., Apple’s share increased by a “modest” 0.7 from 40.8% to 41.5%. The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus are the top selling devices in the U.S. market. It’s important to look at how various telecom carriers fared, especially in the United States where buying unlocked phones is very uncommon. According to TechCrunch, Verizon accounts for 42.2% of the iPhone 6 sales, followed by AT&T with 41.4%. The iPhone 6 is outselling its bigger sibling by 3-to-1 in the U.S.
In China, Apple’s share rose by 0.2% from 15.5% to 15.7%. Note that the iPhone 6 arrived in China only on Oct.17. That means the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus sold strong enough between Oct.17 and Oct.31 to increase the quarterly share by 0.2%. Meanwhile, the iPhone 6 was the third-biggest selling device in China in October despite recording just two weeks of sales in that month.
The only market where Apple’s share declined was Japan. But it still has 48% share in the country.