Android Plays Big Role in Upgrades from Feature to Smartphones

By Gary Kim July 11, 2012
Though observers might complain that Android as an operating system is so fragmented that it is hard to tell what its market share actually means, Android continues to take share around the world.

The latest data from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech shows that for the first time Android has taken at least half of smartphone sales in Great Britain, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, the United States and Australia.

Android's share now ranges from 49.6 percent in Italy to 84.1 percent in Spain, Kantar says. And there is one important angle to that adoption process that has revenue implications for mobile service providers.


As it turns out, much of the Android adoption is being driven by users who are upgrading from feature phones to smartphones for the first time. That, in turn, is important because such upgrades normally entail an increase in average revenue per user, as customers buy data plans.

You might also say the Android trend therefore is troubling for suppliers, such as Nokia, that traditionally have done very well in the lower end of the market. As the whole market transitions to a smartphone driven pattern, rival suppliers selling Android devices might well be in a very-good position to supplant the traditional Nokia advantage in lower-cost devices, as well as the appeal of Research in Motion devices. 

“We are seeing much of the Android sales growth being driven by consumers trading up from feature phones to smartphones,” saya Dominic Sunnebo, Kantar Worldpanel ComTech consumer insight director.

“Our data shows that Android has a higher share of those consumers spending under £50 on buying their handset across the vast majority of countries we cover,” he says.

In markets like the United Kindgom, smartphone penetration in the prepay market also is increasing, with Android handsets such as the Samsung Galaxy Ace and Y performing well, especially attracting younger first time owners, a group who have traditionally been loyal to BlackBerry. 

Kantar also says smartphone buyers, “are much more loyal to their brand of handset and carrier than  feature phone consumers, highlighting the importance of capturing feature phone owners when they are starting to look to change their handset.“

So, smartphone adoption clearly is helpful to mobile service providers for several reasons, including higher average revenue per user and greater loyalty. Android might be helpful because it encourages users to upgrade to smartphones.


Edited by Brooke Neuman

Contributing Editor

SHARE THIS ARTICLE
Related Articles

Two Technologies That Showcase Good VR Could Cost $20K

By: Rob Enderle    6/23/2017

This month, there were two interesting product announcements. The first was in regard to very high-resolution displays that should arrive in VR headse…

Read More

Popularity of Voice Recognition Gadgets Highlights Need for Speech Analytics

By: Kayla Matthews    6/21/2017

Voice-activated personal assistant platforms such as Amazon's Alexa continue to grow in popularity, making lives easier in all sorts of ways. As such …

Read More

Can Machine Learning Defuse the Ticking Time Bomb of Open Recalls?

By: Special Guest    6/20/2017

Did you know that 150 million vehicles have been recalled in the USA since 2014? That's 38 percent of all the cars in America. And, according to Recal…

Read More

Technology and Ties: 5 Reasons Gen X is Taking Over in Business

By: Special Guest    6/20/2017

The generational clash in the workplace between Millennials and Baby Boomers gets all the hype. It reminds me of the debate over who would win - Muham…

Read More

For Amazon-Whole Foods' Future, Look to Zappos, Not Robots

By: Doug Mohney    6/19/2017

Amazon's bid for Whole Foods is obvious and brilliant. There's a lot of crazy talk about how Whole Foods will get turned into people-less stores like …

Read More