updated 09:50 am EDT, Mon August 22, 2011
NPD says Q2 in US dominated by Android, iPhone
Android made up more than half of smartphones shipped in the US during the spring, according to new NPD data. Google accounted for 52 percent of sales in the period. None of that was at Apple's expense, however, as Apple kept gaining share and reached 29 percent in the same period.
All of the gains from the two came at the expenses of older or struggling platforms. RIM's BlackBerry dropped to 11 percent of American smartphones sold. While not breaking down exact figures, researchers emphasized that neither HP's outgoing webOS hardware nor Microsoft's Windows Mobile or Windows Phone had passed five percent.
Among individual smartphone makers, Apple as its own hardware maker had some of the largest share. Motorola was hurt by LG, Samsung, and the Verizon iPhone, dipping down very nearly to RIM's level at 12 percent. The company also was much less influential among Android, having cut in half from the 44 percent last year during the heyday of Droid sales to just 22 percent now.
Apple had the top two spots among individual cellphone models with the iPhone 4 and 3GS in first and second. HTC's Android-based Evo 4G on Sprint and Inspire 4G on AT&T were third and fourth, while the fifth was a basic messaging phone, the Samsung Intensity II.
Having also declined by a quarter in total cellphone sales to nine percent, Motorola is likely leaning on the Google buyout. The deal "shifts the balance of power," NPD executive director Ross Rubin said. The two could also take advantage of the prepaid smartphone market, which nearly tripled in size from eight percent of all prepaid phones a year ago to 22 percent now.
Summer share may not change significantly, but many anticipate a significant shift in the fall when the iPhone 5 ships. Along with the usual release spike, it may be the first real test of Android's survivability on Verizon as customers who were holding off for a genuinely new iPhone on the network will have their chance to buy in. The possible additions of Sprint and T-Mobile could eliminate "safe" areas for Android where it doesn't have to compete among those loyal to one carrier.