Android Captures 72 Percent Of Mobile Market, iOS Lags Behind

By Johnny Wills | Nov 17, 2012 09:49 AM EST

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Android and iOS are frequently competing for the title of the best mobile ecosystem, and the results vary with reports. However, in terms of market performance, Google's Android is miles ahead of Apple's mobile ecosystem.

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Gartner published a report on the performance of mobile ecosystems in the handset industry. The highlight of the report is that Android continues to dominate the mobile world, accounting for 72 percent of mobile phone shipments in Q3 2012, which leaves competitors with a tiny chunk of the market.

In the report published Wednesday, Nov. 14, the analytics company concluded that Samsung is the major player to drive Android shares to the top. Samsung topped the mobile phone shipment chart with nearly 98 million mobile units shipped in Q3 of 2012. Samsung accounts for a 23 percent share in the mobile market.

Apple, one the other hand, managed to remain in the top three, but with just 5.5 percent of the mobile market share. Apple recorded over 23 million mobile shipments in Q3 2012, up by 6 million from Q3 2011. Despite Apple's mobile shipment being up, it faces approximately 30 percent decline in global mobile shares. iOS remains second on the mobile ecosystem chart with a market share of 13.9 percent.

Samsung and Android both widened their lead over competiors in the mobile market and mobile ecosystem segements.

Nokia, on the other hand, turned out to be the biggest loser. The sales of Nokia phones declined by 21.9 percent in the quarter, but Gartner says that the figure is better than its previous estimations. Evidentally, Symbian is nearing the end of its lifetime.

"The arrival of the new Lumia devices on Windows 8 should help to halt the decline in share in the fourth quarter of 2012, although it won't be until 2013 to see a significant improvement in Nokia's position," noted Gartner.

Gartner's report specifically doesn't point to smartphone-only shipments, but the overall mobile phone shipments report reflects the outcomes of smartphone shipments, as smartphones now account for 40 percent of total mobile phone shipments.

Smartphone sales are rapidly growing and were up by 46.9 percent, but overall mobile phone sales dropped slightly when compared to Q3 2011.

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