Nov 25, 2013 01:18 PM EST
Android OS still remains dominant in the smartphone market. Strong demand for smartphones across all geographies will drive much of this growth as worldwide smartphone shipments are expected to surpass 1 billion units for the first time in a single year, according to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker. Android OS shares may decline due to market maturity and competition. Google’s Android OS is leading the Android smartphone market. Low cost smartphone device revenues still remain strong in emerging markets.
Android's share of the market is forecast to reach a peak of 48.8% in 2013 compared to 41.5% in IDC's previous forecast. Android's gains come at the expense of Apple's iOS, which is expected to slip from 51% of the market in 2012 to 46% in 2013. Longer term, both iOS and Android will eventually relinquish some market share to Windows-based tablets, with Windows 8 predicted to grow from 1% of the market in 2012 to 7.4% in 2017. IDC expects Windows RT growth to remain below 3% during the forecast period.
Samsung will stay the top Android-based smartphone seller. Sony and LG are also strong competitors in the Android smartphone market. iOS is the number two operating system. Apple is expected to grow faster due to its recent deal with China Mobile and introduction of more lower cost iPhone devices. Microsoft will also need to compete offering more low-cost smartphones to the emerging markets against the leading smartphone companies.
Microsoft's Windows 8 marketplace impact was anything but revolutionary. Windows 8's agitated many PC users. The high cost of many Microsoft systems made them a tough sell in economic conditions. The numbers could change as the economy is still in recovery from the crisis. The disappointing PC sales indicated weak demand for its Windows 8 operating system that just hit the market over the fall. The company launched its first touch-based operating system, Windows 8 late last year. But Windows 8 could not provide a positive boost to the PC market. Microsoft is way behind its competitors. The company will have to explore ways to recover from its current situation.
The new omni-channel consumers are able to research offers online, discuss information over video, have tablet access to sales associates from the stores, and have abilities to shop in real time or make payments using their mobile retail apps. Susan McPartlin of PwC stated “As we enter an increasingly complex retail landscape with accelerating competitive pressures and digital shopping options, retailers will need to prepare for a wall-less omnichannel retail world, one where shoppers will come to expect a seamless brand experience online, in-store and across multimedia touch points. This multi-format portfolio combined with the proliferation of small, urban, alternative retail formats will pave the way for future growth, dismantling the mass homogenization and scale assumptions that propelled two decades of retail growth.” Mobile retailer apps popularity offered by the largest retailers increased 525 percent in December 2012 when compared with the previous year. More than 18 percent of consumers used a mobile device to visit a retail store and 13 percent used a smartphone or tablet to make a purchase. Over 95 percent of U.S. retailers have optimized their websites for smartphone traffic.
The tablet market is also expected to experience substantial growth with Android gaining in global tablet shipments. Low cost devices will continue to drive the smartphone and tablet market. Android-based tablets expanded market share last year and is expected to continue to grow throughout 2013. Android’s tablet market share was 48.8% in ‘13.
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