Microsoft Has Brighter Future in Smartphone Market: Study

By Ed Silverstein July 20, 2012

The future for Microsoft in the smartphone market is looking brighter. In a new study, Microsoft Windows Phone is projected to have 4 percent of U.S. market share this year. This is up from the 3 percent the company got in 2011.

Nokia, HTC and Samsung are among the companies whose products are leading to the increased market share for Windows, according to Strategy Analytics.

In total, an expected 123 million smartphones will be sold in the United States during 2012, based on data from Scott Bicheno, senior analyst at Strategy Analytics. That sales total is a 21-percent jump from the 102 million smartphones sold in the United States during 2011, Bicheno added.

“Microsoft is making a determined push to crack the United States because it is the most valuable and influential smartphone market in the world,” said Neil Mawston, executive director at Strategy Analytics, reflecting on the numbers in a statement carried by TechZone360.

But Mawston added a few words of caution: Microsoft's smartphone market share in the United States so far is “relatively niche.”

To actually overtake the “stranglehold” of Android and Apple “will not be easy,” Mawston said. “To grow further, we believe future versions of Microsoft's Windows Phone 8 platform will need to dramatically improve support for advanced technologies like multi-core chipsets, enhance the Marketplace app store, expand the number of phone models available from major partners like Nokia or Samsung, and consider reducing the license fees it charges per unit to smartphone makers.”

CNET, citing data from IDC, speculates Microsoft may perform better globally than just in the United States. IDC recently predicted that Microsoft will capture 5.2 percent of the global smartphone market during 2012.

And IDC predicted Microsoft may have 19.2 percent market share by 2016, putting it in second place. “Windows Phone 7/Windows Mobile will be aided by Nokia's strength in key emerging markets,” IDC said in a recent statement. “IDC expects it to be the number 2 OS with more than 19% share in 2016, assuming Nokia's foothold in emerging markets is maintained.”

Edited by Braden Becker

TechZone360 Contributor

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