iPhone gives ground to Android in US and Europe

Apple's smartphone market share in the US drops to 34 percent, while Android phones jump to a 63 percent share, new report finds.

Lance Whitney Contributing Writer
Lance Whitney is a freelance technology writer and trainer and a former IT professional. He's written for Time, CNET, PCMag, and several other publications. He's the author of two tech books--one on Windows and another on LinkedIn.
Lance Whitney
2 min read
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The iPhone has lost some ground to Android smartphones.


Android has been nibbling away at Apple's slice of the smartphone market in the United States and Europe, a new report shows.

Between August and October, the iPhone's smartphone share in the US fell fell by 8.3 percentage points to 33.6 percent, compared with the same period in 2014, Kantar Worldpanel ComTech reported on Wednesday. Meanwhile, the US share for phones with Google's Android operating system jumped by 9.5 percentage points to 62.8 percent from the same period a year ago, Kantar reported.

Apple also saw dips during the quarter in its market share throughout Europe, Kantar noted, the first decline since the three-month period ending in August 2014. The iPhone's slice of the market dropped by 2.2 percent in France, 1.7 percent in Italy and 0.6 percent for the top five nations in Europe (France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK) combined. Kantar considers the overall drop in Europe to be minimal, driven primarily by a deceleration of growth in Great Britain and Germany.

Any hiccup in the iPhone's market share is noteworthy, however, given that the device is the biggest driver behind Apple's revenue. While popular -- the third-best selling smartphone in the US during the quarter -- the iPhone 6S is an "interim" model, a minor upgrade from last year's iPhone 6. Typically, consumers are less likely to bite on Apple's "S" model iPhones, according to analytics firm Localytics. And as always, Apple also had to contend with makers of Android phones, which unveiled their own batch of new phones such as Samsung's Galaxy S6 and the LG G4.

In addition to gains in the US, Android increased its smartphone market share across several key regions in the world, Kantar reported. In Europe, Google's mobile operating system returned to growth in the top five nations after a decline that began in October 2014. Android's smartphone share rose by 6 percent and Italy and by 2.9 percent in France.

"In Great Britain, Android's decline considerably decelerated in the three months ending in October 2015, thanks to stronger performance by Samsung and LG," Kantar business unit director Dominic Sunnebo said in a statement.

Google's latest version of Android is in no hurry to jump onto your smartphone.

Released in October, Android Marshmallow is now on only 0.5 percent of all smartphones seen at the Google Play store over the seven-day period ending on December 7, according to Google's latest Android Developers Dashboard.


Android Marshmallow isn't making much progress just yet.