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Windows Phone outships iPhone in some countries

Shipments of Microsoft's Windows Phone devices have surpassed those of the iPhone in seven markets, but that's not exactly a worldwide trend.

Windows Phone is outshipping the iPhone in certain countries.
Windows Phone is outshipping the iPhone in certain countries.
Josh Miller/CNET

Windows Phone is outshining the iPhone in several countries. But relax, Apple, there is an explanation.

In a blog posted Tuesday, Microsoft corporate communications VP Frank Shaw cited an IDC report revealing that Windows Phone has reached 10 percent market share in a number of countries. Along with that milestone, Windows Phone has outshipped Apple's iPhone in seven markets across the globe.

Shaw didn't divulge the names of those seven markets. But IDC did and explained why Windows Phone has a foothold in those regions.

Speaking with The New York Times yesterday, IDC analyst Kevin Restivo said that fourth-quarter Windows Phone shipments surpassed those of the iPhone in Argentina, India, Poland, Russia, South Africa, and the Ukraine. The seventh market actually lumps together several smaller countries, such as Croatia, and is collectively known as "the rest of central and eastern Europe."

Further, the Ukraine, South Africa, and "the rest of central and eastern Europe" are small markets where Windows Phone shipments numbered less than 100,000 during the fourth quarter.

Windows Phone also has a leg up in markets where Nokia already is popular, the analyst added. In many of those countries, iPhone demand is weaker because of the high cost of the phone and the absence of carrier subsidies.

Finally, IDC used the term "shipped" in the report. But "shipped" doesn't mean "sold." Retailers in those markets may be receiving more Windows Phone devices. But the question, as always, is: how many of those devices are being scooped up by consumers?