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Apple tries to downplay study showing Android in front

updated 04:45 pm EDT, Tue May 11, 2010

Apple says NPD phone share study limited

Apple today disputed an NPD study that had Android outselling iPhones in the US. Company spokeswoman Natalie Harrison claimed the response from 150,000 survey takers was a "very limited" sample and didn't reflect the actual influence of the iPhone OS worldwide. She unusually compared it against the 85 million iPhone and iPod touch units sold in total and pointed to the iPhone's improved third place in smartphone share as evidence of its actual standing.

"We had a record quarter with iPhone sales growing by 131 percent and with our new iPhone OS 4.0 software coming this summer, we see no signs of the competition catching up any time soon," Harrison argued.

While Apple has largely outpaced key Android hardware makers HTC and Motorola in the past few months, the statement doesn't necessarily touch on the iPhone's performance in the US, which was the subject of the NPD study. Worldwide, Apple has sold about 51 million iPhones when excluding the iPod touch and is increasingly reliant on foreign sales, owing partly to relatively new introductions or expansions to multiple carriers that haven't been possible in the US. Android is available on all four major carriers and often through multiple devices.

The NPD data is nonetheless likely to be at least somewhat unrepresentative of actual share as it would include those aware of and willing to complete an online survey instead of all shipments. AT&T switched on 2.7 million iPhones this winter and would had to have been met by uniformly strong sales. Verizon, the largest Android phone provider in the US, saw roughly half as many new customers in the same period for its entire phone range, only a portion of which would have bought phones like the Droid.

by MacNN Staff



  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Isn't this the kind of thing you expect from RIM or Palm? I thought Apple was above such stupidity as worrying who's number is higher.

  1. Flying Meat

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Well, when you've been approached

    to make a comment on a subject, you can either decline or respond, as seems appropriate. They chose to respond. The last half of the last paragraph of the article is perhaps all that needed to be said in that case, but...

    Apple may well care about who's number is higher, but the degree of that care is certainly debatable.

  1. byRyan

    Joined: Dec 1969


    One Vs Many

    These studies are a bit misleading - but then again, apple is kinda used to it. There is only one iPhone (the only variety is in memory) where there is HTC, Motorola, and who ever else making a bunch of different Droids. Compare the iPhone to one singular brand, and iPhone comes out on top, but lump them all together - and their numbers add up.

    Same with the PC world. Its really considered apple VS everyone but if you break it down to apple vs sony the numbers are a lot different. I know in tis arena Apple still isn't number one - but a fanboy can dream ;)

  1. davedawgnyc

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Android is an OS not a phone

    With that in mind, you'd have to add up the iPads, iPod touches and iPhones, then compare iPhone OS to Android OS. I think you'd get a very different result than what Android supporters would like you to believe.

  1. luckyday

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Ya, you are right, there is only one iphone and therefore comparing the iphone OS to all android phones may be unfair in many circumstances. However, there are some instances where the comparison works regardless of how many android phone models there are...

    One important instance is with regard to development. As a result of Android being more widespread than the iphone OS (and i expect this trend to continue), android will get more developer attention... and I can bet that in a years time android will have more apps... and apple has made a h*** of a lot of noise about having more apps (which I don't think is that important).

    Another important area is OS updates. The more people you have using the OS, the more money you can spend on updating it (i.e. expense per user).

    Also, think advertising.

    There are definitely benefits to having more people using your OS. However, it doesn't mean its a better OS, or the phones are better.

  1. ilovestevejobs

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Looks like people prefer choices over fuked close system that Apple are.

  1. Oh Blah Dee Blah Dah

    Joined: Dec 1969


    iPhone OS vs Android OS

    Apple is correct. This is a comparison of OPERATING SYSTEMS, and not HARDWARE DEVICES.

    The iPod touch and iPhone, both, use iPhone OS. While the HTC, Motorola, LG, and Samsung use, or intend to use, Android.

    The Apple iPod touch and the Apple iPhone use the same operating system (iPhone OS) and both have access to the iPhone OS apps. The HTC, Motorola, LG, and Samsung all use the same operating system (Android), and all have access to the Android OS apps.

    If it's a hardware comparison, then it should be iPhone vs HTC vs Motorola vs LG vs Samsung, which then means it would NOT be iPhone vs Android comparison, but a comparison of HARDWARE DEVICES.

  1. Fast iBook

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Bla bla bla...

    Last time i checked there were only 2 3G iphone models, along with some holdoutds on the original iPhone. That means, apple, with 2 available phones, is leading the market.

    - A

  1. ilovestevejobs

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Looks like 'ol stevo

    should have kept his big mouth shut when he said "Folks who want p*** can buy and (sic) Android phone."

    Looks like the idiot totally underestimated how people want this type of content on their phones :)

  1. perryschofield

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Who fudges what??

    So apple fudges their numbers. Apple actually sells their phones. Not buy 1 get 1 for free. Lets say 20% of the number of android units are actually free. Who actuall sold more then? As for iPods. they actually have a higher selling price then iPhones! Who making money then, ipods, or free android phones?

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