Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 7th Aug 2013 17:44 UTC
Windows IDC released its smartphone shipment numbers for the second quarter of 2013, and other than the usual stuff (Android at 80%, iOS down to 13.3% due to lack of a new model), the Windows Phone figures are interesting.

Windows Phone posted the largest year-over-year increase among the top five smartphone platforms, and in the process reinforced its position as the number 3 smartphone operating system. Driving this result was Nokia, which released two new smartphones and grew its presence at multiple mobile operators. But beyond Nokia, Windows Phone remained a secondary option for other vendors, many of which have concentrated on Android. By comparison, Nokia accounted for 81.6% of all Windows Phone smartphone shipments during 2Q13.

Over the past 12 months, Windows Phone went from 3.1% market share to 3.7%. This means that while shipments of Windows Phone devices are growing, they're barely growing any faster than the industry as a whole. Still, it's crazy to see there's less than a 10 percentages points difference between Windows Phone and iOS.

Another potential problem is that Microsoft is effectively entirely dependent on Nokia. If Nokia falters, Windows Phone falters. Other vendors have essentially lost all interest in the platform, and as such, Microsoft has a a very strong impetus in keeping Nokia going. Still, I'm pretty sure that the Surface phone is ready to go at a moment's notice.

They're going to need it.

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RE[2]: Comment by Nelson
by Nelson on Thu 8th Aug 2013 11:12 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Nelson"
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They had 9 OEMs when WP7 was released. About half of those quit offering WP when WP8 was released.

A lot of these OEMs, for example Dell, were weak players on both ecosystems. LG didn't have the stomach for Windows Phone either. The only top tier ones were HTC and Samsung. It was a hopeful thought that 9 OEMs would take WP serious, but it didn't happen. That was then however.

What would you offer OEMs that would entice them to want in on this niche? For instance, Samsung got $97 million in partner payments and some cross-licensing agreements.

Microsoft has plenty of money, marketing muscle, and valuable property to cross license. Also Nokia's increasing volumes have shown the way for other OEMs and shown that WP was more than a fad. A doubling of sales YoY and strong sequential increases should be seen as impressive.

You suggest that they "Sign HTC away from Android." What kind of inducements would be likely to make them give it up for a share in such a tiny market segment that Nokia has 85% of?

Before Nokia, HTC ruled WP. Also, Nokia can't seem to crack the US market. HTC can and will if they place a serious effort into Windows Phone. They are still a common brand here.

HTC is hurting financially as a pure handset business. Microsoft could subsidize licenses, match marketing dollars, subsidize development costs, and even get some cross product synergy going to launch HTC into tablets. There are many options and HTC at present is in bad shape.

and Huawei are already selling WP8 handsets. What might wake them up?

They will come in strong as the pivot to lower cost models begins in earnest. They are excellent OEMs and I believe will be a large factor on either ecosystem in the medium term.

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