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Windows Phone snatches UK sales from Android

Windows Phone is now the third biggest smart phone system in the UK, with one in five new users switching from Android.

Android and iOS could be starting to lose their stranglehold on the UK's smart phone sales, with 17 per cent of current Windows Phone users having jumped ship from Google's platform.

Microsoft has made big gains in the UK, adding 700,000 users to the platform within the last year, according to figures released by market research firm Kantar. During the three months to the end of January 2013, Microsoft's Windows Phone operating system managed to grab 6 per cent of overall smart phone sales, up from 2.4 per cent in the same period last year. 

Nokia's Lumia 800 was the best-selling Windows Phone in the UK in that period, but Nokia was not the only mobile-maker to benefit from a Windows boost, with HTC's Windows Phone 8X hot on its tail in third place.

The figures reveal that nearly one in five users of the Windows Phone platform had previously owned an Android smart phone, whereas just 2 per cent had jumped ship from iPhone. There were also gains from BlackBerry and Symbian, with 6 per cent and 26 per cent respectively. Microsoft's system is also incredibly popular with first-time buyers -- 47 per cent of all Windows Phone users have never owned a smart phone before.

While Android may be seeping a few users, the Big G hasn't got too much to worry about, as it still holds 56.2 per cent of the UK market, with Apple managing to grab a respectable 30.6 per cent.

The biggest loser was predictably BlackBerry, dropping into fourth place behind Windows Phone, with just 5.8 per cent of UK smart phone sales.

Windows Phone has now taken third place in the UK, Germany, France, US, Australia and Italy. The operating system seems to have finally made good on its potential as a third option against the plethora of Android devices and the might of the iPhone.

It's not impossible that 2013 could be the year Windows Phone takes over from iOS as the number two platform, especially if more disgruntled former Android users give it a try. Apple currently commands 21.5 per cent of smart phone sales globally, but Windows Phone is snapping at its heels with 14 per cent.

Do you think Windows Phone has what it takes to topple iOS? Or is it destined to be stuck in the shadow of the older platforms? Let me know in the comments below or over on our Facebook page.