iOS 9 Adoption Growing Steadily In China

Apple sparked a wave of controversy this week when it announced that half of iOS users had already updated to iOS 9 as of last weekend. Since then, multiple third party companies are coming forward and calling the company out because their estimates are much lower. Crittercism and Mixpanel were among the first to call Apple’s 50% mark into question.

But what about iOS 9 adoption specifically in China? As the world’s largest smartphone market, this is an important metric, and one that Chinese firm TalkingData has measured.

iOS 9 adoption steadily growing in China

TalkingData estimates that as of Sept. 22 (or six days after its release), 18.9% of iOS users in China had updated to iOS 9. The firm reports that this adoption rate is five times higher than it was for the first day after iOS 9 was released, which was 3.2%. It’s also a lot faster than adoption went last year for iOS 8 in China.


The firm defines iOS 9 device penetration rate as “the proportion of active iOS devices that have been updated to iOS 9 [or iOS8] in the surveyed period among all the active iOS devices.

iPhone 6 so far the biggest share

The iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus only just became available today, so measurements of devices running iOS 9 do not include them. So as would be expected, the iPhone 6 makes up the biggest share of devices that have been upgraded to iOS 9 in China, with the iPhones 6 Plus coming in at second place. Together, last year’s two iPhones made up nearly 60% of the devices that had been upgraded to iOS 9 as of Sept. 22.

iOS 9

Where are Chinese users updating?

TalkingData also analyzed iOS 9 adoption by geography and found that the distribution of users is fairly even according to city size.


The firm lists first-tier cities as Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen and second-tier as “other provincial capitals, municipalities and special economic zones.” Perhaps unsurprisingly, most of the Chinese who upgraded to iOS 9 are in Beijing:


Graphs in this article are courtesy TalkingData.