Windows Phone outsells iPhone in seven markets, BlackBerry in 26

Windows Phone outsells iPhone in seven markets, BlackBerry in 26

Summary: Windows Phone has reached a milestone in seven markets - but is topping the Ukrainian charts really a big deal?


Windows Phone handsets have outsold the iPhone in seven markets including India, analyst firm IDC has revealed, and beat out BlackBerry in 26.

The countries where Windows Phone pipped the iOS handset in Q4 2012 were Argentina, India, Poland, Russia, South Africa and the Ukraine. The seventh market was a collection of countries, including Croatia, that IDC labels "rest of central and eastern Europe".

IDC mobile analyst Kevin Restivo told the New York Times there were a few qualifiers to the Windows Phone results. There's a 'Nokia effect' making Windows Phone popular where the Finnish company has traditionally been strong. Also, the grey market is sizable in some of the countries, and in Ukraine, South Africa and "rest of central and eastern Europe" fewer than 100,000 Windows Phone devices shipped in each market in the quarter.

The report of the Windows Phone milestone stems from a blog by Microsoft's head of communications Frank X Shaw mocking Google's most recent round of spring cleaning that saw the death of Google Reader.

Shaw also said Windows Phone had reach 10 percent smartphone market share in a number of countries. ZDNet has asked IDC for additional details on which markets that involves, but likely nations where Windows Phone has reached the 10 percent figure include Italy and Nokia's homeland, Finland. Consumer research firm Kantar World Panel noted that Windows Phone in the 12 weeks to December 23 accounted for 13.9 percent of smartphone sales in Italy. Nokia's cheaper Lumia 620 has proved popular there, and more broadly across Europe, Windows Phone has been gaining users previously on Android

Overall, IDC says Windows Phone and Windows Mobile devices accounted for six percent of the 227 million smartphones shipped worldwide in the fourth quarter of 2012. For the year, Windows Phone made up 2.6 percent, however, the analyst firm is predicting Windows Phone to be the fastest growing platform between now to 2016 with a compound annual growth rate of 71.3 percent.

IDC expects Windows Phone to account for 11.4 percent of smartphone shipments by 2016, largely off the back of declining Android market share. It forecasts Apple's share of shipments to grow from 18.8 percent in 2012 to 19.1 percent by 2016, while Android 69.3 percent in 2012 declines to 63.8 percent. It predicts BlackBerry to be flat with four percent share. 

Topics: Windows Phone, Microsoft, Nokia, EU

Liam Tung

About Liam Tung

Liam Tung is an Australian business technology journalist living a few too many Swedish miles north of Stockholm for his liking. He gained a bachelors degree in economics and arts (cultural studies) at Sydney's Macquarie University, but hacked (without Norse or malicious code for that matter) his way into a career as an enterprise tech, security and telecommunications journalist with ZDNet Australia. These days Liam is a full time freelance technology journalist who writes for several publications.

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  • Q4 2012

    So I think we shouldn't count wp8 here as Nokia released wp8 in India in Jan 2013. I guess, Q1 and Q2 would be great for Nokia as they're gonna release 520, 720 here in India.
    • Dumping w0

      So They were dumping Windows Phone 7 handsets, similar to the Short lived Amazon fire sale pre-WP8 in established markets.
      • Get your facts right please!

        Nokia 520, 720 are WP8 recently introduced phones. People are not fools to buy dumped phones. In India WP outsells iPhone (never mind even if they are minuscule) with Android being uncrowned king.
        • double digit

          WP has a double digit market share in India. 520 is not yet released. These numbers will go up when 520 and 720 are released.
  • Good for Nokia

    But.. they used to sell a lot more smartphones before the suicidal "Windows Phone" commitment.

    In all these countries, people see Nokia phone and buy it. They won't care what OS it runs. It's a phone, after all.
    • @danbi

      Same goes for iphone(Apple). Same goes for Android(Samsung).

      Your point?
      • android

        good andro, with china phone.
        still okey.... 4 me.
      • Point is...

        When they buy an iPhone, they know what they're getting. When they buy a Nokia phone, it can have God knows what on it.
      • My point

        Nokia has reputation in many countries. The world is bigger than the US, remember?

        People will buy Nokia even if they put Ubuntu on it.

        By the way, recently in Europe at least, Nokia has moved much of their advertising to Nokia Asha 306, which is an Symbian phone. I don't see any more Windows Phone advertisements. Strange development, eh.
        • @Danbi

          I agree that wherever Nokia is strong, people see it as Nokia phone. But still I don't get how Nokia committed suicide by moving to Windows Phone.

          I live in India. Here, not so tech savvy are viewing Lumia as Nokia phone with "Windows OS". They care less about the OS. But still they buy Nokia as Nokia is known for it's build and quality.

          As for the saying that if Nokia puts Ubuntu on it, still people buy, that too I agree. Same goes true if Samsung puts Ubuntu/Tizen on Galaxy series. Also Apple puts Ubuntu on iPhone people will buy.

          I have an iPhone 4S and Lumia 900. Yet my relatives think that I have high speced Nokia phone. :-)
    • That's not true. Nokia was quickly dropping in sales before WP7

      which is why they made a smart decision to go with Windows Phones as their OS. If they chose Android they would be in far worse shape, probably bankrupt by now. And in the US and those other countries people see "iPhone" and buy it. They don't care what OS it runs. It's a simple phone, after all.
      NoMore MicrosoftEver
      • how you know?

        In my country at least, one has to get way out of their way to buy an iPhone, because only two of the carriers ever offer it. Until recently it was just one carrier. You more or less has to pay the full price upfront. Around new model launch, it is sold at prices at least twice what the US unsubsidised price is. Yet, people do buy it. So no, in order to buy an iPhone, you need to know what you are buying and want to buy it.

        Not so with Windows Phone models.
    • That is not correct ...

      People know what they are buying. Nokia Symbian smartphones are almost not there in Indian smartphone premium segment. 'Asha' series rule in lower segment (which they got into act much later). If they have not gone with WP they would have been in deep trouble (Only this would be called 'suicidal') as there is no way they could beat local Indian or Chinese Android phones which are all dual SIMs, have latest hardware and cost unbelievably much less!.
      • dude

        nokia will survive... there is love for nokia...
        if they put any thing on it.
        they will buy...
        android will be like java powered platform
        everything runs with security problems
        cheap people cheap phone
        Chintan Prajapati
      • @Nandakumar

        I agree. Nokia could not compete with Micromax or Karbonn in the Android space in India :-)
    • dont care?

      Do you really think people in these countries are stupid not to recognize the value of the phones? The people in US would not buy iPhones had they not been heavily subsidized by the carriers. Subsidies skew the market outcome. People in the countries where subsidies are not offered have to make the best decision in selecting a product that offers best for their money and their needs. They don't care about instagram or instashit.
    • Windows Phone outsells iPhone in seven markets, BlackBerry in 26

      nokia have a very good brand recognition/perception all over the world even before apple entered the phone market. and they can capitalize on that brand recognition, kudos for m$ marketing decision ...
  • Windows Phone outsells iPhone in seven markets, BlackBerry in 26

    This is huge news and a big win for Microsoft and Windows Phone. The Microsoft Windows Phone 8 OS is a fabulous piece of work. Its nice to see more and more people adopting the phone and realize that the phone should work for you and not the other way around.
  • Kudos to Microsoft, kudos to Nokia

    WP8 is seeing the largest growth rates in the market today. Kudos Microsoft. Kudos Nokia. My Nokia Lumia 920 is the best phone I've ever owned with the best phone OS I've ever used. While others are busy trying to bring back Windows 3.1 and its static grid of icons, you've been innovating and it shows.

    That good folks like danbi are here admitting they (and their apple bosses) are terrified of you shows that you are on the right track. Keep it up.
    • toddy, lovie and johnny trading notes

      I hope that's all you trade.